It was Sunday night–the day before my usual shopping day–and I found myself with some defrosted stew beef and not much else. So I grabbed a few ingredients and whipped up a Sunday Supper of Beef Stroganoff in my Dutch Oven. It was simple and satisfying.
About 2 pounds of cubed stew beef
Olive oil, about 1 tablespoon
Some fresh white mushrooms (canned if you don’t have fresh)
Red wine, about 2 cups
Beef broth, about 32 oz.
1/2 cup sour cream
Pat your stew beef dry with a paper towel. Make sure you dry all sides of the beef. Salt and pepper the beef.
Heat the olive oil over medium high heat in a Dutch Oven. Add your beef–in small batches so as to not crowd the pan–and sear the cubed beef on all sides. You are just searing the beef right now; you will cook it fully later. Searing locks in the flavor of the meat.
Remove the beef and add the sliced mushrooms. Stir to cook for a minute or two.
Add the beef back in to the Dutch Oven. Add the red wine and beef broth.
Cover and allow to cook over medium heat for about two hours. You want your stew to reduce by half.
Remove about half a cup of juices from the pot and mix thoroughly with a tablespoon or two of flour. When thoroughly mixed, pour into your pot and cook for about ten minutes. This will thicken your sauce.
Remove another half cup of juices from the pot and mix with sour cream. When thoroughly mixed, pour the sour cream mixture back into your pot and stir to combine.
Check for seasoning and add salt and pepper if desired.
Plate up your stroganoff with some buttered noodles. Be sure to add some of the delicious gravy to the plate.
Even though we are experiencing a bit of a thaw here in New England, it’s still Winter in my book. And, as far as I’m concerned, a hearty Beef Stew is a perfect mid-winter meal!
I’ve always prepared my Beef Stew in my slow cooker, but–as you probably know–lately I’ve been in love with a beautiful 5.5 quart Dutch Oven I received this past Christmas from my older sister.
Actually I’ve jumped so far into Dutch Oven cooking, I braved an hour journey to the South Shore to score two new Martha Stewart Dutch Ovens–in glorious Spinach green–being offered by someone on Facebook Marketplace…but that’s a story for another post…
Back to this unbelievable Beef Stew in the Dutch Oven…
What amazed me the most about making this Stew in a Dutch Oven instead of a slow cooker, is how unbelievably tender the beef was! Just melt-in-your-mouth juicy, tender and flavorful beef, which is way beyond what a slow cooker can achieve. And yet, still as simple and easy to make.
I started by browning my Stew beef (about two pounds) on top of the stove with a tiny bit of oil and, I believe, this is what made the difference in the flavor of the beef. After browning the meat, I loaded up my pot with baby carrots, some sliced celery, large chunks of red potatoes, a diced onion and minced garlic. I then stirred in some diced tomatoes, beef broth and a little tomato paste, to make the gravy and placed the covered pan in my preheated 375 degree oven to cook for three hours.
I’m a “peeker”. I am compelled to check in on things and make adjustments during cooking. Thankfully that was a good thing for this recipe, as I did need to add some water. I ended up adding about a cup of water at the end of the first and second hours, because some of the natural liquid evaporated during cooking. This was the only difference in cooking in a Dutch Oven versus a slow cooker, which naturally keeps liquids from evaporating by using a tightly sealed cover.
For those on a budget, this recipe easily makes eight complete servings and cost less than $15 to make. That’s less than $2 a meal! Plus you get the benefit of knowing you made it yourself–with no “unwanted” ingredients AND the comfort of a warm and wonderful home on a cold winter’s night.
Why not give it a go? And, if you do, let me know how you made out!
Two pounds of fresh stewing beef from your butcher
Five or six larger red potatoes, cut into large chunks
Baby carrots or regular carrots cut into large chunks
Two ribs of celery, sliced
One or two onions, rough chopped
Minced garlic to taste
1 can of petite diced tomatoes
2 tablespoons of tomato paste
32 ounces beef broth (boxed broth) or substitute cans to equal 32 ounces
Salt and pepper
Water, if needed
On the stove top over medium high heat, brown the beef with a tablespoon of oil
Remove from heat and layer in potatoes, carrots, celery, onion and garlic
Pour in broth and diced tomatoes with juice and spoon in tomato paste
Cover Dutch Oven and put in preheated Oven for three hours, checking and gently stirring each hour. Add water if needed.
It’s freezing cold outside. The snow is falling lightly and swirling around with the frigid wind.
But–no matter–I’m excited because it’s a perfect day to fire up my oven and make this Perfect (But Kooky) Rib Eye Roast in my new favorite pot, the Dutch Oven.
If you’re just tuning in, I received a Dutch Oven from my sister this past Christmas and I’ve been experimenting with making everything. I’ve made Crusty Bread, Italian Crusty Bread, Lemon Chicken in a Pot, Chicken Noodle Soup, and also Garlic Roasted Red Potatoes.
Well today I am presenting a beautiful Rib Eye Roast, which my sister snagged for me at our local Shaw’s for an unbelievable price! This is a small Roast (just 2.5 lbs.) that on sale cost less than five dollars! So that makes this Roast easy to make, crazy delicious and an unbelievably frugal meal! Essentially the Home Chef Trifecta of meals!
But….(there’s always a “But” isn’t there?) the preparation of this Roast is just kind of Kooky to me, because it goes against my learning on how to prepare it. I got this recipe from my sister, Teresa, and when she was giving it to me I kept saying: “That can’t be right! Are you sure?” But she assured me it’s the correct way, so I’ve trusted her. I’m glad I did!
Only a few ingredients are needed for this one–including your wonderful Dutch Oven–so this is so simple, it doesn’t even really need a formal recipe card (which is good since I haven’t figured out how to do that on WP yet!).
Here’s a simple list of instructions:
Allow your Rib Eye to come to room temperature by leaving it out for about a half hour before cooking
Preheat your oven to 500 degrees
Smear the meat with olive oil and then slather it on both sides with minced garlic
Generously salt and pepper the meat and then lay it in the Dutch Oven
When your oven is at temperature, put your UNCOVERED Dutch Oven in and set the timer for 7 minutes a pound. In my case, my Roast is almost exactly 2.5 lbs., so I set my timer to 18 minutes.
So here’s the Kooky part. DO NOT open your oven at any time during this process!
Just relax and trust me here.
Cook the uncovered roast for 7 minutes a pound and then either turn off your oven–if you have a good heat holding oven–or reduce the heat to about 275. RESIST opening the oven when you change the temperature! Set your timer for another 2 and a half hours in the off (or reduced) Oven.
Admittedly this was the hardest part for me! (I’m so impatient!)
Seriously DO NOT open your oven…even just to peek! The high temperature is basically searing the Roast’s outside and the low or off temperature cooks it through, so opening the oven defeats the purpose
After the two and a half hours, remove the Dutch Oven from the oven and allow it to rest for about ten to fifteen minutes.
When you slice it, you will not believe how succulent and tender this relatively inexpensive cut of meat is!
Wasn’t that simple? Doesn’t it look incredible?
It doesn’t get much better than this! Trust me on this one, folks. You won’t regret it!