Sometimes you just want a hearty dinner. And even though it was a warm December day, (temp was in the 70′s, no kidding!) it just felt like the perfect day for beef stew or stroganoff. So, knowing that we needed to eat fairly early so I could go to my knitting group and then on to choir practice, I began searching for a beef stew recipe that could be made in the crock pot. (I love my crock pot! It makes dinner, or even lunch, super easy!) After searching around a little bit, I found something that sounded good and used stuff we already had in the house. A trip to the grocery store for one little ingredient would have thrown off my whole day!
So, while I was fixing lunch (OK – heating up leftover pizza) I also worked on dinner. I defrosted half a roast we had frozen. We like to buy a pretty good sized roast when they are on sale and cut it into two or three pieces. One gets cooked right away while the others get frozen (the other kitchen gadget that I really love is my Seal-A-Meal. I am able to vacuum seal leftovers or meat or whatever and it lasts so much longer.) Anyway, I defrosted a roast, cut it into bite sized pieces, covered it with flour and placed it in a skillet with a small amount of oil. While the meat was browning, I cut up 4 small potatoes, 2 carrots (I’m the only one in our house that likes carrots, so I didn’t put many in there) and one large onion and put them all in the crock pot. When the meat was browned on all sides I added it to the crock pot and then added one cup of beer. Finally, I put a cup of water into the pan that browned the meat, scraped up all the browned pieces from the pan and added it all to the crock pot as well. I set the crock pot on medium ( which says 8 hours, but the food is usually ready in half that time with this particular model) and let it get to work. All in all this took about 15 minutes.
After lunch, I pulled out the bread machine, added everything to make a loaf of bread and let it get to work too. It wasn’t long before the house was smelling wonderful!
We decided that this was definitely a keeper meal. The only thing we might do next time is add some mushrooms. I could also get everything ready days in advance, seal it and freeze it for a quick easy meal with no prep – just defrost, place in the crock pot and hit start.
Ingredients (serves 2):
- 1-2 pounds beef roast, cut into bite sized pieces
- 4 small potatoes
- 2 carrots
- 1 large onion
- 1 cup water
- 1 cup beer
- salt and pepper to taste
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 5 hours