Friday, June 24, 2011

Beef and Mixed Mushroom Stew

Copyright 2011 LtDan'sKitchen blogs
I've made this beef stew a number of times and it always turns out great. The first time I ever made it was to celebrate the graduation of a friend's daughter. As suggested in the recipe, I served it with wide egg noodles but I've also served it with rice pilaf, plain rice and french bread and it was still a great pairing. The other thing that I like about this dish is that it is versatile enough that you can exchange the mushroom with pearl onions if you so desire. Or, another option is to use both which I've also done as well. The cooking process is a bit involved but the stew is definitely worth the effort. I encourage you to give it a try.

Beef and Mixed Mushroom Stew - Adapted*

1 package dried porcini mushroom (½ oz)
2 lbs beef for stew, cut into 1½  inch chunks
2 tbsp vegetable oil
1 lb mushroom (cremini) or pearl onions
1 large onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
4 tbsp tomato paste
1 cup chicken broth
¾ cup dry red wine
2 medium carrots, diced into large chunks
salt and pepper
¼ tsp thyme
bay leaf
chopped parsley (for garnish)

1. Reconstitute the porcini mushroom in 1 cup boiling water for about  
    30 minutes. Set aside. 

2. Pat the meat dry with a paper towel and set aside. 

3. In a large pot, heat the oil at medium high heat and add the  
    mushrooms (or onions) and cook for about 10 minutes until  
    lightly browned. Transfer to a bowl and set aside. 

4. In the same pot, brown the meat on all sides. Do this in batches and  
    add more oil if necessary. Transfer the meat to another bowl and set

5. To drippings in the pot, add the garlic, thyme, bay leaf and diced  
    onions and lower the heat to medium. Cook until the garlic and  
    onions are lightly browned. Add the red wine to deglaze the pot.
    Let it simmer for about a minute.

6. Return the meat into the pot. Add the chicken broth, the liquid used  
    to reconstitute the porcini (strained through a sieve) and the tomato  
    paste. Heat to boiling and let simmer covered for two hours or until
    the meat is tender.

7. Add the mushrooms (softened porcini and cremini), carrots and  
    onions if using and check for flavor. Simmer for 30 minutes more  
    and adjust the flavor accordingly. If desired, you can also skim off  
    the fat depending on how fatty the cut of beef that you used. 

8. Garnish with chopped parsley and serve with your choice of pasta or

* Good Housekeeping Step-By-Step Main Dishes: Hearst Books, New York,1999

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