Monday, September 30, 2013

Southwestern Beef Stew

Beef Stew is one of my favorite comfort meals.  It is a hearty and flavorful meal that is easy to put together.  This beef stew has a southwestern  flavor to it - green chili and aromatic and flavorful spices of chili powder, cumin, and Mexican oregano.  The primary ingredients in this stew are carrots, mushrooms, and boneless beef chuck short ribs.  I like to use boneless beef chuck short ribs in my stew because the meat is fork tender and adds a wonderful flavor to the stew.   The stew is cooked for 8 hours on low in a slow cooker.   Ladle into bowels and you have a rich hearty and delicious meal to enjoy.  What I sometimes do with the leftovers is freeze them.  The stew freezes nicely and just needs a quick reheating.

Southwestern Beef Stew

Southwestern Beef Stew
Special Equipment:  Large Slow Cooker


3 ½-4 pounds boneless beef chuck short ribs well trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
½ cup all-purpose flour
½ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon garlic powder
½ teaspoon red chili powder
½ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
¼ cup olive oil
1 medium onion chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup dry red wine
2 cups beef broth
4 medium carrots, peeled and sliced ¼ inch thick
1 cup chopped canned tomatoes
1 (4 ounce) can diced green chili
1 ½ tablespoons red chili powder
1 bay leaf
1 teaspoon Mexican oregano
1 teaspoon cumin
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 pound white button mushrooms, quartered
Salt and pepper to taste
Cilantro for garnish

1. Whisk together flour, onion powder, garlic powder, red chili powder, cumin, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.  Add beef, a few pieces at a time and toss until lightly coated.  Shake off excess flour mixture.
2. Heat the oil in a large skillet.  Add beef in batches and cook until browned on all sides.  Place the meat in the slow cooker.
3. Add onions to the skillet and cook until softened, about 5 minutes.  Stir in garlic and tomato paste.  Add wine and cook, scraping the pan until the liquid comes to a simmer.  Pour contents of skillet over meat.  Add broth, carrots, tomatoes, green chili, red chili powder, bay leaf, Mexican oregano, and cumin to the slow cooker.  Stir, cover and cook on Low for 8 hours or until beef is tender when pierced with a fork.
4. When stew is almost ready heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat.  Add mushrooms and cook until mushrooms are golden brown.
5. Stir the mushrooms into the stew.  Taste.  Add salt and pepper if needed.   Serve and garnish with cilantro.

Makes 8 servings


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