One-Pot Supper

March is quite possibly my favorite month in Washington. It’s filled with rain and snippets of sun — perfect rainbow weather. But it’s still chilly, and that makes me want to cook warm, hearty meals for dinner. I love to braise an entire meal in the oven, or in the slow cooker while I am at work so I can come home to a heavenly smell and delicious supper ready to serve my family. This stew is perfect as is, or spooned over creamy mashed potatoes or a bed of steamed white rice. And it’s simple.

Classic Oven-Braised Beef and Tomato Stew

  • 2 pounds chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 2-inch cubes
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons oil, suitable for frying
  • 5 strips thick center-cut bacon, diced
  • 1 large onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cups cremini mushrooms, cleaned
  • 2 cups young spring carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup parsnips, roughly chopped
  • Pinch red pepper flakes
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • ¼ cup tomato paste
  • 2 to 3 sprigs of fresh rosemary
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 2 cups water or low/no sodium beef stock
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees. Brown meat in batches over medium to medium-high heat in oil until each side is golden brown and caramelized, but not cooked through. Set aside.
  2. Add bacon and onion to the pan; brown for 5 to 7 minutes over medium heat. Add the veggies and seasonings and cook for about 5 minutes, then add the tomato paste to coat everything.
  3. Return the meat and its juices back to your oven-safe pot, and mix everything together. Use the wine and stock and deglaze the pan, and add the goodness to the main ingredients.
  4. Add the rosemary and bake with the lid on for 3 to 5 hours. (This stew is done at 3 hours, but tastes better the longer it spends in the oven.) Check halfway through cooking to check the liquid in the pot, and add water at 1 cup intervals if needed while it braises.

Note: You can also add all of the ingredients into a crockpot and simmer it all day long on low heat. 

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