Beef stew

Decided I should aide my recovery with some good vegies, but I’m a dedicated omnivore – I have to have something with my vegies. Made the rather English choice of beef, potatoes and carrots. Braised me a bit of steak in some Sam Adams with a bit of onion, roasted some potatoes with a little salt and pepper, boiled some carrots. My technique is terrible, the beef was a little too tough and the potatoes had boiled too long and then cooked to high and burned a bit. But the carrots were great and the beer took the edge off it. And a sense of satisfaction from 

Another 10 hours sleep (6 hours, a couple of hours awake, 4 hours). No idea what to do with myself today. Done playing Spider Solitaire for now and if I try to read my mind wanders without getting sleepy. Spent an hour on code yesterday, going thru the hotfixes I made on Friday that caused so much trouble. I clearly stepped on a case of “Inheritance done in C through void pointers and ambiguity” because the code and tests all seemed to check out fine. But clearly they don’t work as a part of a complete system. Ugh.

Really ought to catch up on cleaning and etc, I guess I’d better focus on energy foods today and napping.  I’ve read that napping is the better way to catch up on sleep, but then I’ve also read that napping can be bad for you by disrupting your sleep patterns and rhythms. Yeah, well, not getting more than a couple of hours sleep a night probably isn’t good either :)

Confused? I am be.


damm you – now I have to go get a steak….

Got a slow cooker? If not you need one.

Beef roast, browned prior to putting in slow cooker.
Sliced potatoes, not cubed just sliced/quartered.
Carrots, I’m lazy and use the little peeled baby carrots.
Celery finely chopped.
Onion, finely chopped.
Dark red/burgandy wine, 1/2 cup/cup…just pour some in.
Water, enough to cover the vegies.
Garlic, or if lazy like me glaric powder.
Salt to taste as cooking
Pepper, I prefer cayenne pepper.

Thickening, up to what you prefer. I just put in a packet of McCormic Slow cooker savory pot roast seasoning. Makes a nice think sauce.

Mmm. I used to like making a peppered beef stew, similar to the above infact, but I avoid celery because – although I like celery – the taste permeates anything cooked with it for me and I don’t like that:

Stewing beef, carrots, string beans (not runner beans which is what you seem to call string beans here), chopped mushrooms, a tomatoe, finely chopped onion, a clove or less of garlic, about 1/4-1/2 teaspoon of parsley, teaspoon and a half of freshly ground black pepper (use cayenne if you aren’t going to grind it), 1/4 cup of cream, and either a 1/2 cup of rioja reserva or 3/4 cup of dark ale, a little sea-salt (about a half-teaspoon). Of course, water :)

You can either add the potatoes to the mix or roast them separately with a little olive oil and seasoning (black pepper and garlic, maybe rosemary) until crispy – I kind of liked the contrast of having the crunch from the potatoes with the softness of everything in the stew.

Bah, for the best stews
Get a pan of seasoned water on first you want it almost boiling before you move on.
Dice or slice onions, carrots (and any other hard veg)
Small bit of oil in the pan salt, pepper, beef stock.
Throw in the beef and all the hard veg and turn over until the beef is seared.
Take off the heat.
Slowly add flour while mixing until all the excess fat is absorbed.
Now slowly add the boiling water that you put on in the beginning, cup at a time stirring vigorously between each up until the water is absorbed by the flour.
Add it slowly and mix it thoroughly every time should leave you with a thick perfectly seasoned to die for sauce in the end.
Add a little to much water so that the sauce is thinner than you would like.
Stir until it comes to the boil, then simmer for as long as you see fit stirring every now and then.

No stew is a stew without dumplings btw :P

Oh if you put any fast cooking veg in, put it in when you bring it to the boil after adding the water.

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