We rolled into November this morning, and it is cold, gray and gloomy; Crock Pot season is officially upon us.
This hearty stew is perfect on chilly fall nights, and the best part is that it can be assembled in the morning before you leave for work, and you’ll return to find a delicious dinner waiting! Impossible to mess up, you can throw whatever you’ve got in the vegetable drawer in or alter the recipe to your preferences. I like to put in baby Yukon Gold potatoes and serve with crusty bread, but my mom likes to omit potatoes in the stew and ladle it over creamy mashed potatoes. I like the broth, but if you want to *beef* up the stew, double the meat and veggies. Do what works best for you- or whatever you have time for.
The only special equipment required for this is the titular slow cooker. It’s not necessary, but I use a slow cooker that I can sear the beef on the stovetop. The fond (the little brown bits at the bottom of the pan) adds such a yummy flavor to the stew, it’s definitely worth the extra work! My secret ingredient for this stew is Maggi. Like advanced soy sauce, this condiment adds a rich, umami layer of taste. Additionally, I used wine from an open, couple days old bottle. If you don’t have wine, use extra chicken broth to deglaze.
- 1 lb stew beef
- 2 tbsp flour
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1 tsp butter or oil
- 1 cup dry red wine
- 4 cups chicken broth
- 6 ounces tomato paste
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 red onion, roughly chopped
- 3 large carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
- 3 celery stalks, roughly chopped
- 1 lb baby Yukon Gold potatoes, sliced in half
- Salt and Pepper (a few shakes)
- Combine flour, paprika, salt and pepper.
- Coat beef with flour mixture.
- In the Crock Pot insert on the stove top, heat butter or oil over medium-high.
- Once hot, sear beef, 2-3 minutes per side. Beef will not be cooked through.
- Add wine, scraping up any bits stuck to the bottom of the insert.
- Add chicken broth and tomato paste, stirring until tomato paste is dissolved.
- Add remaining ingredients to pot, transfer insert to base (be careful! I have a burn scar from my insert).
- Cook on low for 7-8 hours!
This stew is even better as leftovers!