I made this beef stew for the two of us late last week--and it turned out WONDERFULLY! That, and its pretty nice to come home when its dark and chilly outside, to know that you have a hearty meal waiting for you. :) Martha Stewart's recipes have never let me down, they're always so delicious. :)
I'll be making another soup/stew tonight - the last of the stew is coming with us to work, so we'll need something new for dinner... what can I say, the cold makes me lazy! ;)
* 3 pounds beef chuck, trimmed of visible fat and cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
* 1/3 cup tomato paste
* 3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
* 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
* Coarse salt and ground pepper
* 1 pound medium onions (about 2), cut into 1-inch chunks
* 1 pound small white or red new potatoes (about 6), well scrubbed, halved if large
* 1 pound carrots, cut into 1 1/2-inch lengths
* 6 garlic cloves, smashed
* 2 bay leaves
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a Dutch oven (5-quart) with a tight-fitting lid, combine beef, tomato paste, vinegar, and flour; season with salt and pepper.
2. Add onions, potatoes, carrots, garlic, bay leaves, and 3 cups water. Bring to a boil. Cover, transfer to oven, and cook until meat is fork-tender, 2 to 2 1/2 hours. Remove bay leaves and, if desired, season with salt and pepper before serving.
3. Slow-Cooker Variation:
Place beef in a 5-quart slow cooker. Distribute tomato paste, vinegar, and flour over beef; season generously with salt and pepper. Add onions, potatoes, carrots, garlic, and bay leaves. Cover slow cooker; cook on high until beef is fork-tender, about 5 hours (or cook on low heat 8 hours).