Thursday, September 2, 2010

Burgundy beef stew

My husband doesn't really like beef stew, but normally eats it without too many complaints. I, on the other hand, love beef stew and think it is one of the wonderful reasons for using a slow cooker. This week I tried a new twist on beef stew, to delicious results.

You'll need:

3 medium potatoes, diced
5 carrots, peeled and rough chopped
1 pound of stew meat
8 ounce can of tomato sauce
1 cup burgundy or other full-bodied red wine
1 tablespoon worchestire sauce
1 teaspoon oregano
1 tablespoon of oil, to brown stew meat
1/2 cup flour, for dredging
Pat of butter
salt and pepper

Wash and dice the potatoes and carrots. I peeled the carrots, but left the skins on the potatoes. Why bother?

Slice the potatoes into half-inch slices, then lay the slices on the board and repeat. Dice in half-inch pieces. I rough chopped the carrots into similar sized pieces as the potato.

Place the chopped vegetables in a 6-quart slow cooker that has been sprayed with non-stick cooking spray.

Season the stew meat with salt and pepper. Put the flour in a resealable bag, then drop in about half the stew meat. Reclose the bag and shake, shake, shake. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Shake off the excess flour and place the meat in the skillet. Brown on all sides; this will take about 5 minutes. Brown the meat in two batches to reduce crowding in the pan.

Using a slotted spoon, place the browned stew meat on top of the vegetables in the slow cooker. Brown the remaining meat and add it to the cooker.

Top the browned stew meat with the tomato sauce and oregano. (You can cheat and substitute about a 1/2 cup of ketchup for the tomato sauce in a pinch). Now for the really yummy part. Add one cup burgundy or other red wine to the pan drippings in the skillet. Also add the worchestire sauce and a pat of butter.

It smells delicious! Once you add the pat of butter, cut the heat and stir the pan to melt. Then pour the wine mixture over the meat and vegetables. It will make them happy, I promise. Cook in the slow cooker on low for 8 hours. When you come home and stir the cooker, this is what you will see.

Gorgeous, right? And delicious, too. I promise. The wine gives this recipe a richer flavor than other beef stew recipes I've tried. It was so good, in fact, that after dinner (and before I packaged up the meager leftovers) I caught my husband sopping up the gravy from the bottom of the pan. That was the best -- and funniest -- news of the night. This recipe is a keeper.


  1. You may want to add about a cup of water to the slow cooker near the end of cooking time. Decide for yourself how "saucy" you want your stew to be.

  2. Consider using three or four thyme sprigs, instead of the oregano. It gives a wonderful, earthy flavor. Yum!