Summer is going to turn into fall in the Crescent City any day now. That means it’s time for beef stew. It’s a great way to finish off Sunday’s roast. But this hearty dish is so delicious, I sometimes cook a roast just to chop it up for stew. This recipe serves six, but can be stretched with more vegetables when you have a crowd to feed.
I serve this over rice on dreary winter days. But it’s tasty over grits, a slice of toast, a hot biscuit or cornbread.
INGREDIENTS FOR ROUX:
5 tablespoons butter
5 tablespoons flour
See directions for Roux on this site
INGREDIENTS FOR STEW:
2- to 3-pound boneless rump roast, cooked, and cut into cubes (3 to 3 1/2 cups lean beef)
2 cups cooked, chopped carrots
3 cups cooked, diced potatoes (3 to 4 red bliss variety)
1 can diced tomatoes (15 oz)
1 cup chopped onion
¼ cup chopped celery
2 to 3 cups Swanson’s Beef Stock
1 garlic clove crushed or 1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 bay leaf (remove before serving)
A shake of hot sauce
STEP BY STEP:
1) Cook roast covered at 350 degrees until meat thermometer registers 170 degrees. Cool pan drippings, let settle and pour off fat. Save.
2) While roast is cooking, boil potatoes in skins until softened, but not fully cooked.
3) Boil carrots until softened, but not fully cooked.
4) Make a roux with butter and flour. (See Roux recipe on this site)
5) When roux is delightfully dark brown and smells like a baked piecrust, add onions and celery and sauté until the veggies are soft.
6) Add diced tomatoes and mix well.
7) Pour this mixture into a large stew pot or Dutch oven—something capacious with a top.
8) Add beef, beef drippings, two cups of beef stock, carrots and potatoes.
9) Add seasonings.
10) Cook over low heat for at least an hour, preferably several hours. Keep adding beef stock as needed until you reach the consistency you want. The stew should not be as liquid as soup.
11) Keep tasting. This isn’t an exact science. Adjust seasonings such as salt, pepper and hot sauce to your taste.