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Author Notes: This robust and unctuous beef stew gets a Green Mountain makeover using local beer, cellared winter vegetables, grass fed beef, and just a kiss of maple. If you are outside Vermont, use whatever similar ingredients you can find (hopefully locally) but make sure your maple is REAL. Enjoy this stew with some hearty whole grain bread topped with cultured butter, this is the quintessential wintertime feast! - Stefano Coppola
- 4 pounds Beef Chuck (preferably local, grassfed), 1" cubed
- 3 tablespoons Butter
- 3 tablespoons Kosher salt
- 3 tablespoons Black Peppercorn, coarsely ground
- 1/4 cup AP Flour
- 3 Sweet Onions (such as Vidallia), large dice
- 3 Leeks, cleaned and sliced
- 1 sprig Rosemary, chopped
- 4 Bay Leaves (5 if using dried)
- 1 teaspoon Crushed Red Chili
- 24 ounces Dark beer (I used Wolaver's Oatmeal Stout)
- 1 cup Maple Syrup (I used Grade B)
- 2 quarts Beef Stock (you may not need it all)
- 1 bunch Thyme, leaves only
- 3 Medium Parsnips, large dice
- 2 Medium Carrots, large dice
- 1 Turnip, large dice
- 3 Stalks Celery, large dice
- 3 pounds Yellow Fingerling (or Yukon) potatoes, cut into 1" pieces
- 3 tablespoons Red Wine Vinegar
- Kosher Salt, to taste
- Season the beef with black pepper.
- Melt butter over medium-high heat in a heavy pot, preferably cast-iron. Sear beef very hard, working in batches making sure not to crowd the pot. If the bottom begins to burn turn down the heat.
- Once all the beef is seared and out of the pot, add the salt, onions, and leeks, stirring & scraping up the browned bits as the onions release their liquid. Add flour & cook until onions are beginning to soften, about five minutes. Add bay leaves, chili flakes, and rosemary.
- Add beer and fully deglaze pan, bring to a simmer and add 1 qt of stock and maple syrup. Turn heat to low and cover with a tight fitting lid.
- Simmer on very low for one hour.
- Add remaining vegetables and thyme, add enough of the remaining stock to just cover the vegetables, if necessary. Simmer 30 min longer, uncovered, until all vegetables are tender.
- Season with Red Wine Vinegar and salt to taste. Garnish with chopped parsley.
- Serve with a big hunk of great bread and butter.
- This recipe was entered in the contest for Your Best Cheap Feast
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