It is a good time of year to try different versions of my original Minestrone Slow-Cooked Stew. It is still bitter cold and we rarely get a warm day. Most of us are so looking forward to spring! I am so done with this winter – but am trying to find projects to keep me busy. In the meantime, comfort food is what we look forward to after being outside!
For this version, I added red wine introducing an “exotic” taste with a wonderful red wine flavor. I do not care for a beef stew broth since I lean towards my Minestrone Stew, which is tomato-based. With the red wine I did enjoy this stew for its rich flavor. My ingredients are approximate because I add based upon taste tests and the vegetables are based upon how much looks good in the pot, which means I typically need to add more of the liquid ingredients. For the red wine, we prefer Merlot, which is a dry wine.
2 lbs boneless chuck roast, cut into bit-size pieces
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tsp salt
1 tbsp freshly ground pepper
2 sweet onions cut into 1-inch chunks
1/8 cup flour
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 – 3 cups red wine (I prefer Merlot)
3 cups beef broth
1/2 tsp dried rosemary
2 bay leafs
1/2 tsp dried thyme
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 – 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
4 carrots, peeled, cut into 1-inch slices
2 stalks celery, cut into 1-inch slices
12 small red-potatoes, cut into pieces
Fresh parsley to garnish (optional)
On medium-high heat, add the olive oil to a large heavy pot. Once heated, add the beef and brown. Add the salt and pepper as the beef browns. Once browned, remove the beef with a slotted spoon and set aside. If there is too much liquid, carefully remove the excess. Add the onions and sauté for about 5 minutes, until softened. Reduce heat to medium-low and stir. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute.
Add some of the beef broth to deglaze the pan, scraping any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pan. I prefer to cool down the pan with beef broth and turn off the flame before adding the wine. Simmer for a few minutes. Add the meat, bay leaves, and herbs and bring to a gentle simmer, cover and cook on very low for about an hour or two.
Add Worcestershire, tomato paste, potatoes, carrots, and celery, and simmer covered for another hour or until the meat and vegetables are tender. Taste and adjust seasoning. Serve with a nice crusty, homemade bread hot out of the oven and enjoy!!