- There's something about cooler weather that brings out the "stew" in us. Cozy dinner-time thoughts evoke longings for hearty, warming meals like thick soups and chunky stews with cooked-for-hours flavor and filling ingredients. While living in Scotland, where the very long winter months hovered in the 30 and 40-degree temperatures or colder (with loads of snow and ice on the ground), I found myself making Guinness Stew quite frequently. It started off as a curious inquisition into creating stews that called for beer. I don't like drinking Guinness, but I can certainly appreciate it's thick consistency and aromatic qualities.
- 2 tbsp evoo
- 3 lbs. meat in chunks
- 4 slices bacon
- 2 medium onions, finely chopped
- 3 carrots, peeled and sliced on angle
- 3 ribs celery, finely chopped
- 1 fresh bay leaf
- 1 tsp allspice
- 2 tbsp honey
- 2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 bottle Guinness
- 6 cups beef stocks
- 1 pound small new potatoes, scrubbed and left whole
- 3 tbsp butter
- 3 tbsp flour
- 1 loaf Irish soda bread
- Preheat oven to 375F
- Place a large pot over medium-high heat with 2 tbsp evoo, about 2 turns of pan. Add the meat to the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until well-seared on all sides, 7-8 minutes total. Remove the meat from the pot and reserve it on a plate.
- Add the bacon to the pot and cook until brown and crispy, 4-5 minutes. Add the onions, carrots, celery, bay leaf, cumin and allspice to the pot, and cook until the veggies begin to get tender, 6-7 minutes.
- Add the honey, Worcestershire, Guinness, beef stock and potatoes to the pot and bring to a bubble. Cover the pot and transfer the stew to the oven, cook until the meat is tender, about 1 hour.
- Remove stew from oven and place on medium-high heat on stovetop, bring to a bubble. Place a small skillet over medium-high heat and melt the butter. Sprinkle the flour over the butter and cook it for about one minute.
- Scoop a mugful of the broth from the pot and whisk it into the roux. Transfer the thickened liquid back to the pot of stew and allow it to cook at a bubble for 2-3 minutes, until thickened. Serve up the stew with some Irish soda bread.