May 20, 2013
Written by by Judy Vig and Joy Paoletti
Thursday, 04 October 2012 14:22
by Judy Vig and Joy Paoletti
It is finally fall and Joy and I can’t seem to get enough of the changing leaves or the smell of the fireplaces burning as we walk through our neighborhood chatting away about all the delicious fall recipes we want to try. The crispness in the air is just beginning to creep in and it reminds us of football season and cheerleading for Nortre Dame when we were kids.
Every Sunday we would cheer in 32-degree weather for hours and be completely frozen. Mom always had something ready on the stove for us to dive into. One of our favorites was her beef stew. It was so warm and comforting after cheering and freezing during the game. A big bowl of heaven and some crusty bread to soak up every bit was just what we needed to warm us up from the inside out.
We wanted to experiment just a bit and add a few more of our favorite flavors. Joy’s passion is chocolate, as you all must know by now, and she thought it would be a great seasoning for the stew. I roll my eyes as she drops the shiny dark square of chocolate into the pot, teasing me with a big smile on her face, but I must say it added a velvety richness and a bit of a glossy shine. We threw in a little splash of bourbon...... now it was over the top!
Please join us on Facebook for the dates as we return to Better CT, Channel 3 @3pm for some great entertaining as we roll into the holidays. Enjoy!
2 pounds top sirloin or stew beef, cut into 1-inch cubes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
1-2 tablespoons butter
3-4 medium carrots, peeled, halved and cut into 1-inch chunks
1 large onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup flour
2 (14-1/2-ounce) cans beef broth
a good splash of cognac or bourbon to taste
1 pint of cherry tomatoes*
1 - 2 oz bittersweet chocolate
2 medium potatoes, peeled and cut into chunks
2 handfuls fresh green beans, ends trimmed
*you can use canned tomatoes also
Season the beef cubes lightly with salt and pepper, toss with flour to coat meat. Heat 2 tablespoons of the butter and the olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. As soon as the butter starts to turn brown, add half the beef. Cook, turning the beef cubes on all sides until the pieces are as evenly browned.
Add the onions and garlic and cook about 5 minutes. Add carrots, green beans, tomatoes, potatoes and the broth. Bring to a low boil. Add bourbon and let it cook off for a few minutes. Now add the chocolate and move it around to coat everything. Taste and re-season.
Turn down the heat so the liquid is just breaking a gentle simmer. Stir the stew several times while simmering so it cooks evenly and nothing sticks to the bottom. Let simmer on stove about 60 minutes.
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