Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Yummy Crockpot Beef Stew

It was actually starting to warm up a bit yesterday, but I still just wanted to sit in my PJs all day and curl up on the couch. I knew that would not be possible so instead I decided to make a warming classic stew.

I made up this recipe on the fly, which in the past have turned out horribly, like call for pizza this is inedible horrible. Yet I keep trying and using S as my guinea pig. Well thankfully this one turned out to be a keeper. Everything was tender, but not mush, and the flavor was amazing. 

The best part was that since the vegetables were so tender L got to join in the stew fun.

I swear my child wears clothes, but at that moment I was exceptionally happy he wasn't. I keep sending pictures like these to my mother and she's asked me if I ever feed him with clothes on (I have other pictures that prove I do). He's just starting to eat finger foods so I figure he can go sans clothes at home till he gets the hang of it, then he can just purposely smear it across his shirt.

I was also happy I found cheap crock pot bags. They are amazing! I don't know why I ever made so many crock pot meals without them. I found mine at Cub, but have also seen them at the dollar store.

I also found my stew meat fairly cheap as well at Aldi. I get my ground beef from them all the time and that has been great, I was a bit unsure of their other meat but figured I would give it a try. Since it was just for two of us I only got 1.38 lb, which cost me around $6.

I peeled and chopped 5 potatoes, as shown in the picture, but ended up only using 4 since one looked a bit ify to me after cutting into it. Four ended up being the perfect number, anymore I think would have been too much potato.

I used beef bouillon cubes to make my beef stock, they are just so much easier to store than cans or boxes. I make that up first so that the cubes dissolved by the time I had everything cut.

I put the bag and stew meat in first then started chopping up my veggies. I'm not a huge onion fan and I absolutely hate chopping them so I only used half an onion. If you have a chopper or love onions I would add the whole thing or even just a bit more than half, it really gives the stew great flavor.

Once all the veggies are chopped and in the crock pot I added my spices. I decided to go with garlic powder, basil, oregano and bay leaves.

After everything is added I poured the beef stock over the top of everything and gave it a mix up. I generally prefer my stew a bit thicker so I could have added less stock or even a pinch of flour to thicken it up, maybe next time.

Now time to wait and clean. I ended up having to turn the heat setting down to warm after about 5 hours (I thought S would be home sooner) since it was all set. Finally time to curl up on the couch with my warm bowl of stew, did I also mention it makes the house smell amazing!

Crockpot Beef Stew

1-1.5 lb. Beef Stew Meat
4 Carrots
4 Medium Potatoes
3 Stalks Celery
1/2 Onion
1 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
2 Teaspoons Basil
2 Teaspoons Oregano
2 Bay Leaves
3 Cups Beef Stock (could use only 2 if you don't want it too soupy)
Salt and Pepper to taste

1. Add your stew meat to the crockpot. If using bouillon cubes start those before the veggies so they have time to dissolve. Peel potatoes and carrots. Chop all veggies.
2. Add the veggies and herbs to the crockpot.
3. Pour beef stock into the crockpot, make sure you mix everything up well so the meat isn't stuck at the bottom.
4. Cook for 5 hours on Low. I stirred it a few times just to make sure it was cooking well, you don't have to stir it more than once or twice I would say.

I hope you enjoyed this recipe, let me know your thoughts, feelings, or just say hello.

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