food Program

Grandma’s Beef Stew

Contributed by Megan Saynisch, Brooklyn Farmhouse

This is a recipe passed down through the generations and made sustainable along the way.  It is delicious served with homemade buttermilk biscuits or drop biscuits.

2 med organic onions, chopped
3 ribs organic celery: 2 chopped fine and the other chopped into 112 inch pieces
3 organic carrots: 1 chopped fine and the other two chopped into 112 inch pieces
12 lb. German Butterball potatoes or other small potato, peeled and halved (or quartered if large)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tbsp tomato paste
12 cup dry red wine
12 cups organic beef broth/stock
1 cup water
2 lbs organic beef stew meat (or cut your own using chuck, trimmed of fat, and cut into 1 ½ ; inch pieces)
14 cup unbleached flour, plus additional for thickening stew
12 tsp ground thyme
1 bay leaf
Salt and Pepper
Olive oil
3-4 tbsp organic flat-leafed parsley, chopped fine

In a medium bowl, toss salt, pepper, and dried thyme with flour. Coat chunks of beef with flour mixture.

Heat 2-3 tbsp olive oil in a deep, wide, heavy pot on medium-high heat. Brown beef chunks well, working in batches to avoid overcrowding, and adding more oil when necessary (turn down heat if flour pieces start to scorch). Using a slotted spoon, remove beef to a plate. Add onions to the pot, adding more olive oil if necessary. Cook and stir onions until they are softened but not browned. Add the celery and carrot that have been chopped fine. Cook and stir until softened but not browned. Add minced garlic clove; stir 1 minute. Move vegetables aside and create an open spot in the pot. Add tomato paste and stir to caramelize, 1 minute. Stir all ingredients in pot together. Add beef and any accumulated juices to pan. Add ¼ ; cup of red wine and stir over medium-high heat until wine is mostly boiled away - 2 to 3 minutes. Add remaining wine, beef broth, and water and stir. Bring to a boil. Turn heat down so stew is barely bubbling and add bay leaf. Cover and cook 1 hour.

Prod a piece of beef with a fork; it should feel relatively tender. If not, cook an additional 20 -30 minutes. When beef feels somewhat tender (but is not falling apart), add remaining carrots and celery to the pot, along with the potatoes. Cook on low heat until the potatoes can be pierced easily with the tip of a sharp knife - 45 minutes to 1 hour.

At this point, if the stew needs to be thickened further, create a flour and water mixture as follows: combine 1 tbsp flour with 2 tbsp warm water; stir until lumps disappear. Add to stew, stir, and turn heat up to medium. If the stew requires additional thickening, make more flour/water mixture and add, a little at a time, until stew is as thick as you desire.

Sprinkle with chopped parsley.