Monday, April 16, 2012

Sexy Beef Stew

To go along with my third installment of "Diary of a Naughty Dietitian," I'm going to post a stellar, delectable, scrumptious and sexy beef dish.  I call this dish sexy because it is rich and satisfying!  Haha!!

I started with some "stew meat" which is basically chunks of not-so-tender/ultra lean beef.  This comes from cuts like chuck, round, shank, which are from heavily exercised parts of the animal, therefore they are lean and tougher.  Now if you want a nice, tender steak....this is NOT the cut you want, but if you want to slow cook a piece of meat to perfection, this is the perfect cut!!  Here's a simple diagram of beef cuts to give you an idea of where the cuts come from.

Ok, on to the stew.  This is the most amazing stew I've ever made or tasted.  It's truly a treat.

I'm convinced that it's a combination of wine and tomato paste that make it so special.  Check it out.

Sexy Beef Stew

1 pound Stew Meat, cut into 2 inch cubes
1 small can tomato paste
1-14oz can diced tomatoes
1 cup water
1 cup broth (any you have on hand)
1 cup dry red wine
1 cup onion, diced
3 carrots, sliced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. olive oil
1 tsp sea salt
1 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 tsp. Mrs. Dash
1/2 tsp. cracked pepper

1/2 cup barley
1/2 cup frozen peas.
*Optional balsamic vinegar

Combine all ingredients except barley/peas in a large crockpot.  Cook on low for 7-9 hours.  During the last 1-2 hours of cooking, add the barley and peas; continue to cook until barley is tender.  Serve with a splash of balsamic vinegar for a little kick.  Enjoy with a heavy, dry red wine.

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