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Slow Cooker Beef Stew

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 Slow Cooker Beef Stew Recipe

A warming dish of beef, vegetables and thick gravy, there's nothing better on an autumn or winter evening. Root vegetables are best but use whatever is in season.

KEY POINTS

 Pre-cooking Time:  10 minutes  Cooking Time:

  9 hours

 How Difficult  Very easy  Freeze?   Yes
 Servings

 6

INGREDIENTS
We suggest using braising steak which should be more tender than stewing steak. If you use stewing steak though, simply cook on high for the first five hours then turn it down to low for the remaining 3 hours. This stew will cook for up to 10 hours in a slow cooker on low heat, the longer the cooking time the more the meat will fall apart when you serve it.

None of the amounts in this recipe are critical.

COOK'S NOTES
Lots of slow cooker beef recipes suggest browning the meat in a frying pan before placing it in the slow cooker. We did a taste trial with browned meat and then without browning the meat. There was no difference in taste whatsoever.

The reason for "frying" the ingredients before adding them to the slow-cooker is simply to heat them up. If they are not heated through first, the slow-cooker will take much longer to tenderise the meat and vegetables.

Recipe by .

Slow cooker beef stew in a bowl

FREEZING
This slow cooker beef stew freezes really well. To freeze, don't complete the last step of this recipe. Pour the beef stew into freezer containers, let it cool, then freeze. Defrost when required using either the microwave or leaving the containers at room temperature for 4 hours.

Place the defrosted stew in a pan on a medium heat, add the few remaining ingredients as noted in the last step of this recipe and cook for 15 minutes stirring every five minutes. Serve when the stew is completely heated through.

 Ingredients

Metric

Imperial

USA

 Braising steak 700g 1 lb 8oz
 Potatoes (not new) 2˝ medium
 Carrots 2 medium
 Swede or parsnips 230g 8oz
 Frozen peas or sweet corn 150g 5˝oz 1 cup
 Onions 1˝ medium
 1 large can chopped tomatoes 450g approx
 1 small can of butter beans 220g approx
 Beef stock (bouillon) 280ml / ˝ pint
 Red wine 4 tablespoons
 Sprigs of rosemary 2
 Dried thyme ˝ teaspoon (1 teaspoon if fresh)
 Olive oil 3 tablespoons
 Plain flour 3 tablespoon 4 tablespoon
 Salt and pepper To taste

WHAT SPECIAL KITCHEN EQUIPMENT?
Slow cooker.
Large frying pan.

CLICK ANY PICTURE ON THIS PAGE TO ENLARGE IT

PREPARATION
Turn the slow cooker onto high heat now so that it is already warmed when the ingredients are added.
Chop the onions finely.
Chop the potatoes into small cubes.
Slice the swede and carrots into thin slices.
Chop the steak into 3cm (1in) cubes.
Sprinkle the flour into 8 tablespoons of water, mix into a paste.

METHOD

Frying beef stew ingredients Add all the ingredients (except the thyme, rosemary, frozen vegetables, flour paste and butter beans) to a large pan on a medium heat.
Mix the ingredients thoroughly and warm the ingredients through for 7 minutes stirring a couple more times. See COOKS NOTES just above the ingredients for the reason for this step. You may need to warm the ingredients in two batches if your pan is not large.

Slow cooking beef stew Add all the ingredients of the frying pan to the warmed slow cooker.
Add the flour paste.
Mix the ingredients thoroughly.
After 30 minutes turn the slow cooker heat to low. Let it cook for 8 hours. Stir a couple of times during cooking if you have the opportunity.

Slow cooker beef stew See COOKS NOTES above for freezing instructions.
Add the frozen vegetables, butter beans and thyme to the slow cooker and stir them in well.
Cook for 30 minutes and serve in a soup bowl with a chunk of bread.
Finely chop the rosemary and sprinkle a little over each bowl of stew.

For a change, why not combine this stew with our dumplings for a stomach-busting feast! Click here for our slow cooker dumplings recipe.

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