Sunday morning found me stiff and tired from all the hard work of Saturday. It also found me making a mental checklist of all the things that I still hoped we would be able to get to. Around noon I realized how tired we were all going to be after a second day of hard, yet rewarding, work. I took a moment to pop into the kitchen and quickly throw together dinner in the crockpot. This way we could keep busting our butts on chores and projects knowing that dinner was handled and none of us would be mandated to the kitchen to whip up a supper fit for Sunday night. I had already pulled a 1 pound package of cubed stew meat out of the freezer in the morning but that was as far as I had gotten. So what to make that was easy, could go in the crock pot, and that I had all the ingredients for? Easy, Beef Stew. So I pulled out the crockpot, and set about putting the ingredients together. I called on Midge to measure in the spices while I chopped potatoes, green beans, carrots and onion.
The chunks of meat were big, so I cut those down to size, dusted them in some flour and seared them in some of the bacon fat left over from breakfast.
The key to beef stew is to cut your veggies on the larger size so they don’t cook to mush and so you have nice substantial chunks, you’re making stew, not soup.
1 pound stew meat cut into 3/4 inch cubes
2 tablespoon flour
1 tablespoon cooking oil or bacon fat
Place the beef and flour in a zip to bag, shake to coat the meat. Place oil in large skillet, heat over high heat. Add the flour coated beef, stirring often just until browned. Place in the crockpot. To the crockpot add the following.
3 cups of cubed potatoes (I cut them into about 1 inch, or larger cubes)
1 cup chopped carrots ( I used baby carrots since that is what I had and cut them into thirds. Larger carrots I would peel and cut into big chunks)
1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen green beans. (if using fresh, cut into 1 inch lengths)
1/2 an onion diced
1 teaspoon Dried Oregano
1/2 teaspoon dried Marjoram
1 bay leaf
3 cups spicy vegetable juice (I used clamato, again, it’s what I had)
1 cup water
1 beef bouillon cube
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Give it a stir, place the lid on it and set it to cook for 6 hours on high heat.
Serve with a slice of fresh baked bread spread with a bit of butter.
Makes 6 servings