Thanks for joining me for this week’s edition of Crock Pot Wednesday. As always, I look forward to all that you have to say.
Thanksgiving passed with no leftovers…per Perfect Daughter's wishes:) While I wouldn’t have minded some leftover turkey for turkey salad, the beef tenderloin that Perfect SIL grilled was quite good. In fact, it was delicious!
When Hubby and I were newly blissful, he still had a semester of college left. I was just graduated…on my wedding day in fact. Our apartment then might fit in our living room + kitchen area today (with room leftover). Can you say small? But, it was ours and we loved it.
We painted it ourselves…baby blue and avocado green. Trendy, huh? I know I am dating myself, but it was spiffy then! Our only closet was about the size of our current refrigerator. I wonder where we put all of that “stuff?”
Our town did not provide much in the way of fast food places, not that we could have afforded those anyway. So…we pretty much always ate at home. Hubby will tell you that he is pretty lucky because he married a good cook. I learned from the best grandmothers around. If you’ve read my blog for very long, you may remember that I pretty much started cooking dinner for our family when I was about twelve. Both of my parents worked, so it was a natural thing for me to do. It may not have been gourmet, but it was good. Anyway….back to the beginning.
I have always said that if you can read a cookbook, then you can cook. I still believe that to be true. Some cookbooks are better than others, however. One of the ones that helped me the most then, and one that I still revisit often. is the Better Homes and Gardens New Cookbook. Of course, mine stopped being “new” a long time ago. I know it has been revised over the years, but I still have my original copy and really don’t care to replace it.
One of the tried and true, most reliable recipes that I began using then – and continue using today- is the one found on page 206 of my edition. Old-Time Beef Stew remains one of Hubby’s favorites. It’s one of mine as well, of course.
Old-Time Beef Stew (adapted for the Crock Pot)
2 pounds beef chuck, cut in 1 1/2-inch cubes
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 clove garlic (minced)
1 medium onion, sliced
1 or 2 bay leaves
1 Tablespoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar (I omit.)
1/2 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon paprika
dash ground allspice or cloves
6 carrots, pared and quartered (I use those “baby” carrots.)
4 potatoes, pared and quartered (I use 6-8 new potatoes, halved)
1 pound small white onions (I usually omit.)
(1 1/2 cups sliced celery)
In a Dutch oven(in an iron skillet), thoroughly brown meat in 2 Tablespoons hot shortening, turning often. Add 2 cups hot water(I usually use beef stock) and next 9 ingredients. Cover; simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally to keep from sticking. Remove bay leaves and garlic. Add vegetables. Cover and cook 30-45 minutes, or till vegetables are tender. Serves 6 to 8.
Gravy: Skim most of the fat from the liquid; measure 1 3/4 cups liquid. Combine 1/4 cup water and 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour till smooth. Stir slowly into hot liquid. Cook and stir till bubbly. Cook and stir 3 minutes. Serve stew in bowls. (I usually omit.)
I brown the meat and put it in the crock pot along with the beef stock, garlic, onion, bay leaves, salt, pepper, paprika, cloves/allspice, carrots, potatoes, and celery. Sometimes, I add mushrooms toward the end of the cooking time.
I cook this on LOW 6-8 hours and serve it with cornbread. It makes for a warm, filling meal on a cold winter’s night. Plus, it’s inexpensive to make and can be used for several leftover meals:) Even us oldie-weds like that:)
Be sure to link up with a favorite Crock Pot recipe, or just something you want to share, for a chance to win the Bed Bath and Beyond giveaway to be announced at next week’s CPW.