It uses a slow moist-heat cooking method
and uses a pot with a tight-fitting lid. The beef should be completely
covered in liquid. Use for less tender cuts. While any cut of beef can be
stewed, this method is most appropriate for cooking tougher cuts such as
cuts from the chuck or round.
Step by Step:
- Slowly brown the cubed meat in a small
amount of oil stirring to brown all sides. This step can be omitted but
you will find that it imparts a great deal of flavor to your dish.
- Pour off drippings and season as
- Add water or broth to cover.
- Cover with a tight fitting lid.
- Simmer on a low heat on the stovetop
until meat is fork tender. (Simmer is to cook at a temperature just
below a boil. Bubbles form around the edges of the pan and rise slowly
to the surface.)
- If your stew reaches a full boil, it
will cause your meat to become tough instead of tenderizing it. Be sure
you keep the stew to a simmer.
- Vegetables should be added during the
last half of cooking time.
- To thicken your stew, use a mixture of
flour or cornstarch and water or other liquid. The liquid should be cool
and the mixture should be mixed well to dissolve any lumps. If using
cornstarch, mixture should be 1 part cornstarch to 2 parts liquid.
- If using flour, the mixture should be 1
part flour to 4 parts liquid. This mixture is called a slurry. Slowly
add the slurry to the simmering stew while stirring continuously.
- A cornstarch slurry will thicken almost
instantly while a flour slurry will take a few minutes of simmering to
- Start with a few tablespoons of the
slurry and proceed with a little bit more at a time until the desired
thickness is achieved.