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Boozy Beef and Beer Stew

stew

There are plenty of recipes that call for wine… whether as a sauce for pasta, a base for steaming shellfish, or a medium for deglazing a pan.  But especially during winter (and more particularly during Beer Week!)  we’re all about experimenting with ale.  Have you ever poured a Pilsner into an Aged Cheddar Fondue, or a shot of Stout into the batter of a Dark Chocolate Cake?

Honestly, nothing adds depth to a dish quite as effectively as a quality bottle of beer.  It’s the secret weapon in our hearty, rib sticking stew… the malt and hops deliciously accentuating its deep beef flavor and heady spice.  Just make sure there’s enough beer left over, because you’ll definitely want to have a pint with your meal!

Beef and Beer Stew
Serves 8

Ingredients:
2 1/2 – 3 pounds beef chuck, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup flour
5 tablespoons olive oil
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried thyme
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1 tablespoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon paprika
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 dried bay leaves
2 cups of beef broth
1 bottle of dark beer
2 cups of of baby carrots
1 cup of pearl onions
Chopped parsley

Directions:
Place the meat in a large bowl and season with salt and pepper.  Add the flour and toss to coat.  In a large pot, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil and 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high heat until the butter stops foaming.  Add a quarter of the meat to the pot and brown, about 6 minutes, and then transfer to a platter.  Cook the remaining meat in small batches, adding 1 more tablespoon of olive oil and 1/2 tablespoon butter to the pot for each batch.

Add the garlic and thyme to the pot and cook until the garlic has softened, about 3 minutes.  Stir in the browned beef, Worcestershire sauce, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, cocoa powder, paprika, cinnamon, bay leaves, beef broth and beer.  Add in the baby onions and carrots and more salt and pepper to taste.  Bring to a simmer.  Cover, and cook until the beef is tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Serve, topped with chopped parsley.

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