Sunday, October 17, 2010

beef stew with blue cheese

in the same vein as the carrot and sweet potato soup, aided again by sunset magazine
{the recipe is actually submitted by one of my favorite food bloggers molly watson}.
i made beef stew with blue cheese and chives to help with jacob's GRE this past week.
{he aced it by the way and i think we all know why....}
i've been disappointed with stew before, tender meat but flavorless broth, not so with this one. i think its the full bottle of wine, but maybe its the blue cheese, you be the judge.

*i halved the recipe so it serves four technically but after we ate the first batch we were low on broth so i simmered it with leftover chicken stock, approximately a cup, for the second meal.

about 1 tbsp vegetable oil
1.7 lbs of beef chuck, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1 1/2 in pieces
2 slices hardwood-smoked bacon, chopped
1 large onion, cut into 1/2 inch wedges
about 1 tsp salt
1/8 cup flour
1/2 tbsp. paprika, it suggests smoked Spanish paprika but this did not come with my spice kit and the plain paprika was great
1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
1 bottle (750 ml ) dry red wine, we bought ours for 2 bucks at trader joe's but i'm sure the better wine the tastier, and of course because it cooks for over an hour the alcohol content is neglible
1 lb yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4s or smaller, they suggest large pieces but some of our potatoes did not cook all the way through initially
1/2 lb baby carrots cut into rounds
1/2 tbsp butter
1/4 cup or more crumbled blue cheese
1/8 cup minced chives or green onions

* its especially important to have all your spices etc measured out before beginning because the pan gets hot and everything starts to move fast or else burn and i was scrambling, just a tip.

Heat a 3-4 qt oven proof pan over medium-high heat. add 1/2 tbsp oil. when its hot, brown a fifth to a quarter of beef at a time, turning meat and adding remaining oil as needed, about 5 min per side, and adjusting heat so meat sizzles but doesn't burn. transfer meat to a bowl.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. add bacon to pan and cook until fat renders{ don't know what that means, it got soft for me } and starts to brown. with a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to bowl with beef. add onions to pan and stir in 1/2 tsp salt. cook, stirring until onions begin to soften, about 2 minutes. transfer onions to bowl with beef. add flour to pan and cook, stirring until it starts to turn golden, about 2 minutes. add paprika and chipotle; cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds.

add wine and increase heat to high. scrape up any browned bits from bottom of pan. add reserved beef, bacon and onions. bring mixture to a boil. cover and bake until meat is tender, about 1 1/2 hours.

return pot to stove. {this is where my oven proof pan was not big enough and jacob transferred it to larger pot} add potatoes and bring to a boil. add carrots and return to a boil, then adjust heat to maintain a simmer. cook, uncovered, until veggies are tender, 30 minutes. stir in butter and salt to taste {now that i'm reading this i don't think we did that, but i bet it would be good} serve hot, topped with blue cheese, a few grinds of pepper, and chives.


  1. Nice blog! I like your writing way. I'm doing practice GRE here: . I hope it's useful for GRE test takers.

  2. We tried this and LOVED it. Blue Cheese really set it off!