• 1.5 pounds top round beef
  • 2 cups brussel sprouts, ends trimmed
  • 2 cups celery
  • 2 cups carrots
  • 1 cup onion
  • 2 cups mushrooms
  • 2 cups potatoes
  • 1 can no sodium diced tomatoes
  • 2 tablespoons fresh thyme
  • 2 cloves of garlic minced
  • "better than bouillon" low sodium beef bouillon
  • canola oil
  • whole wheat flour

It’s finally starting to feel like fall.  If you’re in New England with us, you can’t help but be inspired by the surrounding yellow, red and orange leaves.  It just makes you want to put on a cozy sweater, light a fire and cook some comfort food.

This recipe is definitely one for a Sunday.  There’s no rushing a good stew.  You have to have time and enjoy the process.  It’s definitely worth the final product.

I have to say that in my younger days when I didn’t have much culinary knowledge, I was a slave to recipe helpers.  By that I mean prepackaged powders that give you all the flavors you need for your dish.  Yuck!  I’ve come a long way and this recipe is just one of the results showing that flavor comes naturally.  No additives necessary!

But hey, I’ll let you be the judge

The Recipe

begin by trimming all the visible fat off of your beef.

prepare a dredging mixture of 2 cups whole wheat flour, 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

cut beef into 2 bite squares

using a dutch oven or porcelain cookware, heat 2 tablespoons of canola oil.  Canola oil has a high smoke point and works well for searing.  Dredge meat in flour mixture and add to hot oil.  Be sure not to crowd the pan, you may have to work in batches.  The key here is to sear your meat on all sides creating a nice brown coating.  This will seal in the juices while it cooks later on.  I find it easiest to use tongs for this.  If you need to add more oil, do so just before a new batch to give the oil time to heat up.  If the oil isn’t hot, your meat won’t brown.

meanwhile, cut up your veggies.  For this recipe we used carrots, potatoes, mushrooms, onions, celery, brussel sprouts and canned tomatoes, but as always feel free to use what you have on hand.  We like to make all the veggies just lightly larger than a mouthful.  I think there’s something about the meat and veggies falling apart with your spoon that makes this meal that much heartier.

When all of your meat is browned, set aside in a separate bowl.

Now deglaze your pan with red wine.  Add fresh thyme.  Once red wine is burned off heat 2 more tablespoons of canola oil.  When oil is hot, add celery, carrots and onion.  Saute about 5 minutes.  Add garlic until browned.

Add 8 cups low sodium beef stock with a pinch of sea salt & pepper.  Place beef back in pot.

Cover and simmer for 30 minutes.

Add remaining vegetables to pot and simmer for another 20 minutes.

Begin adding whole wheat flour 1 tablespoon at a time.  This will thicken your broth.  Add until you’ve reached your desired consistency.  I personally like mine just a bit thicker than a traditional soup.

Continue simmering for 10 minutes for until vegetables are soft to the touch of a fork.  If needed, add salt and pepper to taste.  I sometimes add more of the low sodium beef bouillon if I want a stronger beef flavor.

Enjoy served with crusty ciabatta bread

Note on the veggies:  This may be too many vegetables for your pot.  If you find that you run out of room, save the extras for the following nights dinner by making an easy roasted veg side dish.