Old Fashioned Beef Stew

Mid-winter calls for comfort food and when I think of comfort food, I think of old-fashioned beef stew. I had a major craving for it this weekend and decided to play around with my usual recipe and I’m so glad that I did. The end result was a delicious meal for my family to enjoy.

If you’re wondering what I did differently it’s simple – I seared the beef. By searing the beef on the highest flame, I was able to lock in the juiciness of the beef and not have it dry out while cooking. In addition, I added an additional cup of wine and the entire can of crushed tomatoes because I had some red wine to get rid of and what was I really going to do with the additional crushed tomatoes anyway?!

Lastly, I realize many people flour the meat before searing it, but since neither my mother nor Julia Child believed in flouring it, I’m going to stick with them! I have tried flouring the meat (once) and honestly searing it did a much better job of locking in the juices and it didn’t add on the extra calories.

I hope you love it! xo Nicole

Beef Stew
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds lean top round or "Stew Beef" is what most grocery stores will call it
  • 1 large sweet onion, diced
  • 2 cups large chunks of celery
  • 4 large carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 3 russet potatoes cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 tablespoon dried basil
  • 1 28 oz can Tutto Rosso crushed tomatoes
  • 28 oz warm water
  • salt to taste
  1. Add the olive oil to the skillet and sear the beef in batches, about 5 minutes per batch.
  2. Remove browned beef cubes to a plate lined with paper towels, keeping skillet over heat and retaining the beef drippings.
  3. Lower the heat to medium-high and cook the onion, celery, and carrots in the retained beef drippings until just softened, stirring continually for 3 to 5 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic to the onion mixture and stir for 1 minute.
  5. Pour the red wine into the pan and bring it to a boil while scraping the browned bits of food off the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon.
  6. Continue cooking the mixture until the wine evaporates, 10 to 12 minutes.
  7. Once the wine has evaporated, return the beef to the skillet.
  8. Add the potatoes to the skillet.
  9. Pour the crushed tomatoes in and then before discarding the can, refill the can with hot water and add it to the skillet.
  10. Add the basil and salt.
  11. Bring the liquid to a boil and then reduce heat to low and simmer until the beef is very tender and the sauce is thick approximately 4 hours.
  12. Stir and check regularly to make sure it doesn't stick.
*If you like black pepper, add it to taste
**If the liquid is drying up, make sure to only add additional HOT water or the meat will be tough.


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