Kitchen Sink Beef & Porter Stew
Sinkology is proud to present Emily Schuermann, our food-loving guest blogger who runs Food for a Year. Emily is here to share some recipes she has created exclusively for the Sinkology blog that reflect her view of a copper sink: simple, timeless, affordable and beautifully rustic.
These days, it seems as though I am always in a race to beat the dinner bell. I recall the days from decades past, when I was ambivalent to that self-imposed alarm. Those distant college & early career memories flash occasionally through my mind; the days of cooking for one. No rush, no tears about being hungry, no screams at the sight of green, or fake gagging in protest of the menu.
Yes, dinnertime used to be a bit less stressful – but it was pretty lonely. I don’t miss those days at all; the hustle of a herd-filled home is true a blessing ((well except for that fake-gagging! It has got to go, ha!)). And with that blessing comes an expectation of daily feedings – can you believe it?!
One of my favorite ways to get a yummy, stress-free meal on the table with minimal tears & gags is to make a “no-peek” stew. I have several “no-peek” recipes, over on my FFAY blog, using a variety of proteins & spice combinations. I really can’t pick a personal favorite but the kids clearly love my “no-peek” Davy Crockett beef stew the best.
((CHECK out all my “no-peek” variations HERE))
Are you wondering what a no-peek stew is? Well, it is one of the most simple cooking methods around. All you need is a large (7-10 qt, depending on the size of your herd) dutch oven, a list of ingredients & an oven. Place the ingredients into the pot, cover & bake for 5-6 hours @ 250°. Aside for the temptation to peek just to see what is happening ((which is a no-no)) – there is no need to oversee the pot & it’s contents — it takes care of itself! When cooking time is complete, you have a pot full of tender veggies & chunks of beef ((or chicken, pork etc.)) and the most delicious, slightly thickened, flavorful broth.
With all that yumminess for so little effort, it’s no surprise why I love “no-peek’s” so very much!
As I gathered the ingredients for this recipe, I was surprised by all of the beautifully colored winter produce. I couldn’t resist the urge to throw in a bit of everything into my cart. The key for Kitchen Sink Stew is to use small amounts of a variety of ingredients, trying to include a few of everyone’s favorites.
Just look at the rainbow of colors:
- rainbow carrots
- purple sweet potatoes
- baby golden butter potatoes
- bright, fresh green beans and
- red, juicy tomatoes, just to name a few!
Along with a colorful variety of fresh ingredients, this no-peek Kitchen Sink Stew is made perfect thanks to a few key pantry staples:
- beef bouillon base
- Dijon mustard
- marinated sun-dried tomatoes
- sweet Italian garlic packed in oil
Once the ingredients are pulled together, a yummy, flavor-packed, hearty stew is certain. But talking the kiddos into eating a cornucopia of veggies is nearly impossible – regardless of how pretty. Unless…
you trick them. Wait – trick sounds harsh, right? Actually, I finely chop the veggies that are responsible for adding the most flavor ((and happen to be the same ones they HATE)) & then leave the rest of the veggies in large, easily identifiable chunks. That way I have imparted all of the yumminess without provoking dinner-time tears.
One more bonus: leaving carrots, potatoes, green beans ((etc.)) in large chunks allows the kiddos to choose a few they will eat and remove the unwanted veggies. That way they feel like they get a choice, but I managed to get them to eat something besides beef.
Speaking of flavors ((secret ingredient alert!!)) :: adding one can of a dark, well-hopped beer easily boosts the flavor of your stew with only the added effort of popping the top and pouring.
Once all of the ingredients & seasonings are in the pot, simply cover & bake. No last minute “what’s for dinner??!!” panicking, and you have the most tasty beef stew to set on your dinner table. A delicious, punctual dinner really can be a breeze – just remember not to peek!
- 3 lb sirloin or chuck roast, trimmed and cut into large 2" chunks
- 1 medium white onion, finely chopped
- 1 leek, finely chopped & rinsed
- 2 celery stalks, finely chopped
- 4-5 medium rainbow carrots, cut into 1" chunks
- 1 medium purple sweet potato, peeled and diced into large chunks
- 10-12 baby golden butter potatoes
- ½ lb fresh green beans, trimmed
- 4 campari tomatoes, diced
- 4-5 crimini mushrooms, cleaned & quartered
- 1 T beef bouillon base
- 1 T Dijon mustard
- 2 T marinated sun-dried tomatoes
- 4-5 cloves, sweet Italian garlic packed in oil
- 2 bay leaves
- 1 c chopped Italian flat leaf parsley
- 1 14-16 oz can of Porter or Stout beer
- 8 oz tomato juice or sauce
- 2 T cornstarch
- 1 t ground black pepper
- 2 t kosher salt
- 1-2 T chopped fresh chives, for garnish
- Position oven rack to the lowest placement and heat oven to 250°. Place all of the ingredients in a 9 qt* dutch oven, filling the pot with water, to 2" below the top. Once all of the ingredients have been added, stir to combine flavors. Cover and place into the oven for 5 to 6 hours. When cooking time is complete, season to taste, garnish with chopped chives and serve.
- serves 10
- *if you are wanting to make this in a smaller amount, simply reduce the ingredients proportionately and decrease cooking time to 5 hours.
- **Feel free to add or omit veggies according to your likes and seasonal availability.