Beef and Butternut Squash Stew

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October is officially here and it’s truly starting to feel more like fall. With a more noticeable shift in weather this past weekend, it felt like an appropriate time to make a slow cooker stew and eat my first winter squash of the season. I was inspired by this recipe and tweaked it a bit to make it what I wanted. It turned out just right. Hope you enjoy!

Ingredients:

  • ~2 lb grass-fed beef stew meat
  • ~1/2 cup tapioca flour/starch
  • 1-2 Tbsp grass-fed ghee or butter
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • ~1.5 lb butternut squash, peeled and cut into cubes
  • 1 medium white sweet potato, peeled and cut into cubes
  • 2 large carrots, chopped
  • 8-10 crimini mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 Tbsp coconut aminos
  • 2-3 cups chicken, beef or vegetable broth, preferably homemade
  • 1/4 cup dry red wine
  • 1/2 tsp paprika
  • 1.5 tsp raw honey or coconut sugar
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1-2 tsp sea salt or to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 4-5 kale leaves, de-stemmed and torn into pieces

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Directions:

  1. Place tapioca starch in a large, shallow bowl. Add the stew meat and toss to coat.
  2. Melt ghee or butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion and sauté a couple minutes, until soft. Next, add the garlic and stew meat. Continue cooking until beef has browned. Then, add the beef and onion mixture to the bottom of the slow cooker.
  3. Pour a little bit of the broth into the sauté pan to deglaze it and loosen the brown bits. Once deglazed, add to the slow cooker with the meat mixture.
  4. Add the squash, sweet potato, carrots and mushrooms to the slow cooker. Then, add the sea salt, pepper, paprika, bay leaf, coconut sugar, coconut aminos, broth and red wine. Stir well.
  5. Place the lid on the slow cooker and cook on low for about 7 hours. During the last 30-45 minutes of cooking, add the kale and stir well.
  6. Taste and add more sea salt and pepper, if desired. Remove bay leaf and serve.

Yields: ~6 servings

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Simple Supper Friday: New Year’s Beef Stew

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Happy New Year, everyone! I hope 2014 is treating you well so far and that you’re not too blue with the holiday season being over. I’m always a little sad when it’s said and done, but the fact that it only comes once a year is part of what makes it so special. The rest of my decorations and the tree will come down this weekend…sigh. Since New Year’s, I’ve gradually been taking things down, but saved the lights inside and tree for last. There’s a lot to look forward to this year though, and I’m excited for what’s in store and what I’ll create for myself.

Meanwhile, this stew came together on a whim on New Year’s Day, hence the name, New Year’s stew. I didn’t make any special trip to the store or anything like that, but just used what was in the fridge and cupboards. I threw everything together in my slow cooker and then Jesse and I went out for a nice walk in the sunny, 40-degree weather. After more than five years of living out here, I’m still not used to the weather being like this during the holidays and winter, but it is pretty nice. If I could have snow for Christmas though, I’d take it. There’s really nothing like a white Christmas.

Anyway, have a great weekend and enjoy the stew if you choose to make it. Also, if you want to follow along with me for the January Instagram challenge, check out my Instagram page here. You can also participate if you want, as it’s not too late. Cheers!

Ingredients:

  • 1 Tbsp grass-fed butter or ghee
  • 1/2 large red onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 lb beef stew meat, preferably grass-fed
  • 3 large carrots, chopped into 1/2″ pieces
  • 2 small parsnips, peeled and chopped into 1/2″ pieces
  • 3 Roma tomatoes, chopped
  • ~1/2 medium head green cabbage, chopped
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth, preferably homemade
  • 1 Tbsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1.5 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/2 tsp dried thyme
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • Black pepper to taste
  • Pinch of cayenne pepper

Directions:

  1. Melt butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic, and saute until softened, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and place in the bottom of your slow cooker. Add the chopped carrots, parsnips, tomatoes to the slow cooker as well, atop of the onion mixture.
  2. Meanwhile, in the same pan over medium heat, add the stew meat. Brown a couple minutes on each side. Then, remove from heat and add to the slow cooker.
  3. Add the broth, vinegar, oregano, thyme, black pepper and cayenne; stir. Then, add the chopped cabbage atop of everything. Stir gently, if desired (not necessary though).
  4. Place lid on slow cooker and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 5-6 hours. Stir well once done and serve.

Yields: ~3 servings