Beef Stew

I don’t usually cook beef and this is probably the first beef dish I ever posted!  This is because hubby does not eat beef.  If he does, unintentionally at that, he gets stomach and digestion problems.

For a while, I joined hubby and by choice, did not eat beef.  But I fell off the wagon (blame BFF… joke!) and while I rarely eat beef (or cook it), once in a blue moon, I do… at least for the other members of the family!

But since I am not used to cooking beef, I needed a recipe to get me started –

One of my favorite cookbooks is The Williams-Sonoma Family Meals:  Creating Traditions in the Kitchen (I liked the book so much that I got BFF her own copy several Christmases ago!) –

wsbook family meals
my copy of the book…

The recipe I used –


But, if you notice, the color of the stew pictured in the book is more brownish, but mine was more reddish…  I can’t explain it, since I (thought I) was quite faithful to the recipe, with a few changes like using broth because I had no red wine (it was chicken broth, at that!), dipping the beef cubes (brisket instead of short ribs) in seasoned flour before browning the beef, cooking the stew in my magic (thermal) cooker instead of the oven (which meant I had to start cooking very early in the day)…

800 grams beef brisket, cubed
seasoned flour, as needed (optional)
olive oil, for sauteing
1 medium yellow onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 large carrots, cubed 
2 large potatoes, cubed (instead of parsnips)
1 cup broth (or red wine)
1 small can canned tomatoes
1/4 cup tomato paste, optional
1-2 pieces bay leaf
1 teaspoon Italian mixed spice
salt and pepper, as needed or preferred

Brown the beef in olive oil.  In the same pan, saute the onion and garlic until soft and fragrant.  Put the beef back in the pan and add the carrots and potatoes, and the broth, canned tomatoes, tomato paste, bay leaf and Italian mixed spice.

Cook until the mixture is lightly simmering.  Transfer to the inner pot of the magic cooker and let the stew simmer for about 10 minutes before putting the inner pot into the magic cooker.  Leave in the cooker for about 4 hours and checking if the beef has been tenderized.

If the beef is still tough, simmer again another 10 minutes and returning to the magic cooker.  In my case, it took me about 10-12 hours to get the beef soft and tender.

Season to taste!

Then enjoy!