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Beef and Root Vegetable Stew

Serves 4-6.

I used to make beef stew in a pressure cooker, but I’ve discovered the secret to tender beef in your stew is to cook the stew on a very, very low temperature for a very, very long time. Now I prefer a regular pot, or a slow cooker. This recipe is for a pot, but can be adapted to a slow cooker. Cooking with bones in winter-time is a traditional way to support your health at a foundational level.

3 pounds beef chuck, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes, or about 4 1/2 pounds beef shank, meat removed from bone and cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
1-2 beef bones
• 2-3 tablespoons olive oil
• 2 medium-large onions, chopped (2 cups)
• 3-5 garlic cloves, minced
• 1 cup full-bodied red wine (Cabernet Sauvignon, Côtes du Rhône, Zinfandel, Shiraz or Barolo)
• 2 cups chicken broth or vegetable broth
• 2 bay leaves
• 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
• 2 tablespoons coriander
• 4 large carrots, peeled and sliced 1/4 inch thick
• 3 medium parsnips, sliced 1/4 inch thick
• 1 small rutabaga (yellow turnip) cut in large chunks
• 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
• 2 tsp. salt
• ground black pepper to taste

Directions

1. Heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat in a large soup kettle; add meat and 1 teaspoon of salt to pan in two batches. Brown meat on all sides, about 5 minutes per batch, adding an additional 1 tablespoon oil if necessary. Transfer meat to a platter.

2. Add onions to pot; sauté at high heat 3 min. Reduce heat and occasionally stir for 10-15 minutes, until slightly caramelized.

3. Stir in wine, scraping up any browned bits that may have stuck to pan. Simmer for 10 minutes.

4. Add garlic; continue to sauté for about 30 seconds longer.

5. Add beef, then beef bones. Then add all other ingredients except parsley. Cover ingredients 3/4 of way with water. Cover, and bring to a boil, then immediately reduce heat to a simmer and cook for 2-3 hours, until beef is very tender.

6. Garnish with parsley before serving.