As much as I hate to see Summer go, I am really glad that it’s getting to be the time of year when we all start making our favorite soups and stews. All those comforting foods that come along with cool days and changing leaves. One of our favorites for the time of year is a good beef stew. I have a couple of beef stew recipes including a quick pressure cooker version that I make on week nights, but this one I’m sharing today is special.
I call this my “Sunday” beef stew simply because that’s the only day of the week that I have time to make it. It’s not that the preparation is difficult, it isn’t at all! It’s only because of the cooking time. This is one of those wonderfully rich stews that you put in the oven and when you come back to it more than two hours later you find that something truly divine has happened inside the pot. Simple ingredients have cooked down and combined into a recipe that is so much more than its individual parts. This is definitely one to savor on a lazy Sunday evening. By the fire. With a nice glass of wine.
This stew uses a chuck roast as its basis. Start by removing all visible fat and connective tissue from the roast. Then cut it into bite-sized pieces.
Next, using a very heavy bottomed pan such as a Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over low heat. Add the crushed garlic cloves. Cook, stirring frequently, for about 5 minutes until the garlic is very fragrant and begun to brown just slightly. Remove the garlic and set it aside. Note – I had very large garlic cloves so I used a little less. Normally I would use up to twelve normal sized ones.
Increase the heat to medium-high and add the cubed beef to the pan. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Cook until beef is brown on all sides. Remove from the pan and set aside.
Now, I have to admit that neither BeeBop nor I are wine connoisseurs. And pairing wines with food is a talent that I simply do not have. However, I did have this lovely bottle of red on hand which was a gift from a French friend. I used it for this recipe and served it alongside as well. It worked out beautifully.
Add the wine to the pan and bring it to a boil. Stir and scrape the bottom of the pan to loosen any browned bits from the bottom. Add the garlic and beef back to the pan along with the rest of the ingredients. Bring to a boil.
Cover and bake for 2 ½ hours or until the beef is tender.
Now, admittedly, when you take the lid off after two and a half hours, those herbs are going to look a little worse for wear. Just pull out the stems and the bay leaf and give everything a good stir around. The cooked garlic will dissipate into the stew making it completely delicious. Sprinkle a little fresh thyme on each serving if you like.
Other beef stew recipes you might enjoy from around the internet:
- Beef Stew from For the Love of Cooking
- My Baking Addiction’s Beef Stew
- Simply Recipes’ Short Rib Beef Stew with Ale
- Crockpot Beef Stew from Kalyn’s Kitchen
- Classic Beef Stew from The Kitchn
What I was cooking: