For the record: I thought I had submitted this earlier, but didn't find it anywhere...and it's too good not to share. Apologies if submitted previously. Guys, this recipe is your opportunity to cook something that will be a big hit, especially when the wind is blowing and the snow is snowing. It takes a while, are requires your attention, but it's well worth it!
“He Man Beef Stew”
This recipe has evolved over a period of 40 years of making stew to my liking. It has a very beefy flavor, and that is what I like. I have tried lots of different combinations of veggies, and most are good,
but it is easy to get too much of one thing if you aren't careful. Such veggies as broccoli, cauliflower
and cabbage are good, but I would never add over a cup of so of any of these combined.
Leeks are good, give good color, but have such a subtle taste that it is overpowered. Corn has such a powerful flavor that I never use any more that comes in a package of frozen mixed vegetables. It is very easy to get too much corn, and that ruins it for me.
1 beef Chuck roast, 3-4 pounds, cut into 3/4 inch cubes
NOTE: (chuck roast is, in my opinion the best meat for stew; it has enough fat for flavor, and cooks up tender. You can often find a bone-in chuck roast, which is ideal. The soup bone adds that little bit of extra flavor that makes the stew great).
1 beef soup bone
4 or 5 medium white potatoes, sliced into 1 inch cubes
1 small stalk of celery, sliced into 3/4 inch lengths
1 small package of fresh carrots, sliced into 1/2 to 3/4 inch slices
3 or 4 large mushrooms, sliced
1/3 cup of pearl barley
1 small package of mixed vegetables
NOTE: (choose according to your own taste. Go easy on corn, unless you really like it. A small package of frozen mixed vegetables usually doesn't have too much corn though).
2 cups sliced okra (YES, OKRA IS OPTIONAL...BUT I LIKE IT!)
1 can diced tomatoes (You can add two cans if you really like tomatoes, but one is plenty if you intend
to add the Rotel. And DO NOT USED STEWED TOMATOES unless you like your stew to have a sweet flavor, which I don't)
2 -11.5 oz. cans of V8 vegetable juice
1 can of Rotel tomatoes with diced chili peppers (optional, omit if you don't like a bit of hot peppers)
1 tbsp dry parsley flakes
1 tbsp sweet Basil (dry is what I use)
4 cloves fresh garlic, crushed or finely chopped
1 medium YELLOW onion, diced
1 tbsp. olive oil or cooking oil
salt and pepper to taste
In a large stew pot, (at least a 12 quart) add oil and onion. Turn heat on high, and stir occasionally until onions begin to clarify. I usually start cutting up the chuck roast at this time.
Add cubed beef, sweet basil, garlic, salt and pepper (I usually don't have the meat all cut up before the
onions are ready, so I end up adding it a little bit at a time as I get it cut). Stir occasionally until meat is well browned.
You can start slicing the celery, carrots and potatoes. (Man, smells good, doesn't it?)
Add V8 juice, pearl barley, parsley flakes, soup bone and enough water to cover if necessary. Lower
heat to medium and simmer until meat starts to show some tenderness, usually about 1/2 hour or so.
Add carrots and celery, cook on low heat for approximately 30 minutes, or until carrots begin to show
Add the frozen veggie mix, and cook for approximately another 1/2 hour (it's good to check the cooking
times on the label, and adjust the cooking time accordingly).
Add the rest of the ingredients and cook on low heat until potatoes are done, approximately another half hour or so.
NOTE: I often add SMALL amounts of other frozen veggies, such as black eyed peas, lima beans, bell
peppers, stir fry, etc., for color, if they are available. Be careful, though, you may have to get a bigger
pot, and end up with too many veggies and not enough meat. And remember, some veggies,
especially fresh veggies, may take a bit longer to cook, so you may have to add them earlier in the process.