If you’re like many people, you love the convenience of using a slow cooker. You toss in all of your ingredients, set the temperature, and come back hours later to a deliciously cooked meal.
Here’s a seasonal beef stew recipe that’s perfect to make in your slow cooker. It’s got the same heartiness you expect in beef stew with a touch of sweetness from apples and apple cider – YUM! Depending on your taste preference, this stew can be served with crunchy cabbage slaw or a green salad.
2 pounds beef stew meat, cubed (1 inch chunks)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons flour
¼ teaspoon dried thyme
¼ teaspoon black pepper
2 cups potatoes, cubed (1 inch chunks)
2 cups onions, sliced
¼ cup celery, sliced thin
1 cup red apple, chopped
1 tablespoon vinegar
2 cups apple cider
2 tablespoons cornstarch
½ cup cold water
1. Mix flour, thyme, and black pepper in a small dish.
2. In a large frying pan, heat half the oil. Add half the meat and brown. Remove from pan, and repeat with other half of oil and meat. Put all the meat in the pan and toss with the seasoned flour: Take off the heat. (Note: Cooking the meat in batches lets it brown better. If you crowd the pan, it will just steam.)
3. Place vegetables and apples in slow cooker. Layer meat on top.
4. Mix cider and vinegar: Pour over meat in the slow cooker. Cook on low 8-12 hours or high 5-6 hours.
5. Taste and adjust seasoning if desired.
6. Turn slow cooker to high (you want the stew bubbling).
7. In a small bowl mix cornstarch and cold water: Stir until smooth. Add to slow cooker, stirring well. Continue to cook until stew is thickened.
8. After the stew thickens, it’s ready to be served.
Add more vegetables or additional vegetables (root vegetables like parsnips or turnips work well in stew. So do mushrooms). Use additional herbs such as bay leaf, parsley, or whatever you like.
If you don’t have a slow cooker, cook in a Dutch oven on the stove top, just barely simmering. Make sure to stir now and then. It will take about 2-3 hours. As with the original recipe, add the cornstarch at the end.
Calories – 330
Carbohydrates – 17 gm
Protein – 25 gm
Cholesterol – 70 mg
Fiber – 2 gm
Total fat – 17 gm
Saturated fat – 6 gm
Sodium – 125 mg