On the last Monday of every month, you will find me rolling dice and shouting “luck, be a lady”! No. I don’t frequent the “craps tables” at Foxwoods or Mohegan Sun, but I do get together with friends for a fun-filled evening of BUNCO (an easy game of dice, played in rounds). There are 12 players and we each take a turn hostessing the game, which includes buying the prizes and serving up a meal. Each and every player in our group goes out of her way to welcome us to her home and delight us with great prizes and fabulous food. This past Monday was no exception. It was hosted by Nina and she made the best beef stew I have ever eaten! She graciously shared the recipe and I just had to give it a try.
Soooooooo good! I made it in my LeCreuset 9 qt. Round French Oven. I only own two pieces of LeCreuset but, I have to tell you, I am in love with this cookware. I don’t think it’s my imagination, but everything I make in it seems to be so tender and taste so savory. As I’m dicing and chopping, and adding ingredients to these pots, I become Giada. (Okay. I look a bit more like Ina, but I choose to channel Giada). Anyway…a dutch oven will work perfectly. Here’s the recipe:
Beef Stew Casserole
2 ¼ lbs. boneless chuck (1 inch cubes)
12 small white onions
peas (1 pkg frozen)
carrots – 5 quartered lengthwise
1 (no.2) can diced/crushed tomatoes
1 tbsp. salt
1tbsp Worcestershire sauce
½ cup soft bread crumbs
¼ cup minute tapioca
3 potatoes peeled & quartered
1 clove garlic peeled & halved
Put all ingredients in 2 ½ quart casserole – add water to just cover. Bake in
slow oven – 250 degrees for 4 hours. You may use 1 cup dry red wine for part
of the water.
Cook’s Notes: I used baby carrots, 1/2 cup minute tapioca (for a little extra thickening), and after an hour, I increased the oven temp. to 300. I also cooked it for an extra hour (total of 5), during which time I pulled the lid back a bit. Also, I had an open bottle of white wine, and I poured that in, instead of the red.
Nina served the stew with crispy, steaming popovers and strawberry butter. She said that I didn’t need the popover pans; I could use muffin tins. Uh, uh. Anyone who cooks or bakes knows, it’s all about the tools.
And now, it’s all about going to Marshalls and Homegoods in the pursuit of popover pans. I ask, again, “luck, be a lady”.
Personal note: If you happen to find the popover pans, and you’re looking for a new BFF, call me.