Beef and Beer Stew
1/2 Cup Canola Oil
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 ½ Pounds Chuck Roast, Cut into 2” Cubes
6 Garlic Cloves, Minced
3 Large Carrots, scrubbed and sliced into thick coins, about 1/2″ thick
1 1/2 Pounds Crimini Mushrooms, washed and cut in half
6 Small Baby Red Potatoes, scrubbed clean and cut in quarters
1 – 14oz. Bag Frozen Pearl Onions
2 Cup Frozen Peas
1 Cup Fresh Asparagus, Sliced into 2” long pieces
2 Bay Leaves
1 Tbsp. Worcestershire
3 Cups (24 oz.) Excelsior Brown Ale
2 1/2 Cups Unsalted Chicken Stock
3/4 Cup Fresh Dill
Juice from 2 Lemons
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Preheat a large heavy-bottomed Dutch oven over medium-high heat for a few minutes. While the pan is heating, generously season the beef with salt and black pepper. Next put the flour in a large dish, add the meat and toss it in the flour, coating the beef on all sides. Remove the beef cubes from the flour, shake off the excess flour and set aside on platter. Next add half of the oil to the pot, once it is glistening, it is ready for the meat!
Working in batches, add the beef to the pot in one single layer, browning on all sides, this should take about 4 or 5 minutes per batch. Take care to not crowd the meat during browning and if necessary add a bit more oil to the pan each time if it is getting too dry. When all of the meat has been thoroughly browned on all sides, place it on a plate and set aside.
Next, add the remaining oil to pot, add the garlic and brown for about 2 minutes so that it softens and flavors the oil. Remove the garlic and set aside. Next add the Carrots, Mushrooms, Potatoes and Onions, sprinkle with salt and pepper, and cook for about 5 minutes. This will slightly soften the veggies and give them a hint of beefy flavor. After 5 minutes add ½ Cup of Beer to vegetables, turn the stove up so that the liquid comes to a boil, You are looking for the beer and the vegetable juice to reduce down completely. When the liquid has been soaked up by the vegetables, remove them from the pot and set aside.
Return the browned meat to the pot as well as the softened garlic, the Bay Leaves, Worcestershire and Black Pepper, stir together so that it all nicely combines. Next add the rest of the Ale, return the mixture to a boil, simmer everything uncovered until the Ale reduces down by about 2/3, this will take about 10 minutes. Next add the Chicken Stock, return the pot to a boil and then turn it down to a very low simmer. Cover and cook on low heat for 1 Hour, giving it a stir every now and again, making sure that nothing is sticking to the bottom of the pot. If it is losing moisture too quickly, you can add a splash of water or more stock.
After 1 hour add the precooked vegetables to the pot, taste for seasoning and adjust the salt and pepper a bit if necessary, remember that the flavors will continue to develop, so you don’t want to add too much right away. Cover the pot once again, and cook for another 45 minutes. Add the asparagus to the pot and cover, cooking for another 15 minutes. At this point the meat will be nice and tender and the veggies will be soft, but not mushy. Uncover the pot and add the Frozen Peas, Dill and half of the Lemon Juice, stir it all together and taste for necessary salt and pepper adjustments. If at this point the stew is too watery for you, you can turn the heat up on the stove and bring the stew to a simmer. After a few minutes it should start to thicken up, taste it again. After tasting it you may want to add a pinch or two of sugar to balance the flavors out.
To serve, place a generous helping of buttered egg noodles with parsley in a bowl and top with Beef Stew and a dallop of Sour Cream. Garnish with a sprig of dill and serve with yummy crusty bread!