8-27: Classic Beef Stew

I came clean in 11-9: Fried Jumbo Shrimp that we’ve been eating plant-based for about 2 years now–most entries that I’ve published since mid-2018 feature me essentially attempting to convert these old recipes into meatless/vegan options. 8-27: Classic Beef Stew will be no different.

I realize that not everyone chooses to eschew meat/dairy, and I’m not here to proselytize or debate it with you. I didn’t write these recipes–the goal of this project has always been to take these existing recipes and attempt to cook them ALL, somehow. The recipes are still here, in their original form–it’s up to you (and me) how to interpret them.

It’s rare that bone-in meat is suggested as being suitable for use in stew, but it’s not unheard of. Usually, you’ll find packages of pre-cubed beef marked “stew meat” in the meat section, but any “tough” cut will work.

Ingredients. I don’t have whole allspice (which is surprising), and my spice collection is large enough as it is, so ground (but going EASY on it) will have to do. I don’t plan on making this beef stew Szechuan-style (despite the labeling on the packages), but I am going to use the un-sauced “beef” for my stew.

Roughly chopping onions.

Here’s a view of the unsauced “beef”. Since this doesn’t need to be stewed to become tender, we’ll have to modify the method here to accommodate the switch.

Peeled carrots.

Sautéing the “beef” and veggies together. Since the beef needs flavor (but not tenderization), this ought to cover it in terms of making sure it’s cooked.

Mixing the water and flour for thickening.

This won’t need to cook long since the meat is cooked already. Low and slow will do it, but too long will result in mush.

You can see we’re still getting a pretty good “stew” going.

Adding in the thyme.

Final bowl. I served this over rice, but a nice biscuit would go well too. It’s a pretty classic beef stew–they definitely nailed the description there.

Grade: B+