Monday, February 4, 2013

Esther Ann's Beef Stew

Some of my earliest food memories are of eating this stew at my grandmother's house, and it was one of the first meat dishes I made on my own. Today there are a number of ways I could fancy it up, but it's too precious of a memory for that. For those without fond childhood memories to preserve, you might try switching in your favorite stew spices (marjoram, perhaps?) and browning the beef before starting the stew.

Esther Ann's Beef Stew

  • 2 lbs stew meat (Grandma uses top round), cut into large chunks, perhaps 2-3"
  • 3 celery stalks, cut into 2" segments
  • 2 medium onions, cut in lengths
  • 4 carrots, cut into 4 pieces 
  • 1 C tomato juice
  • 1/3 C quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2 medium potatoes, cut into large chunks
Preheat oven to 300F.

Combine beef, celery, onions, and carrots in casserole dish. In a small bowl, combine tomato juice, tapioca, and seasonings. Pour over meat and veggies, stirring to cover.

Cover and bake for about 2 1/2 hours. Remove the cover and add the potatoes. Bake for another hour, uncovered, or until potatoes are very soft.

Can also be made in the crockpot by combining all ingredients and cooking on low for 8 hours.

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