This rich and hearty stew is a French comfort food classic!
French-Style Beef Stew
This rich and hearty stew is a comfort food classic!
- 1 large Dutch oven
- 2 lbs boneless beef chuck, well marbled cut into 1 ½" pieces
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- 1 ½ tsp freshly ground pepper
- 2 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 onion large size; chopped into ½" pieces
- 227 g cremini mushrooms trimmed and halved
- 7 garlic cloves peeled and smashed
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour
- 1 tbsp fresh thyme chopped
- 1 ½ tsp sugar
- 2 cups dry red wine I used Pinot Noir
- 6 cups beef stock
- 1 lb small white potatoes cut in half or left whole depending on size
- ¾ lb carrots peeled and cut diagonally into 1″ chunks
- ¼ cup Italian parsley chopped; for garnish
- Set a rack in the lower-middle portion of the oven and preheat to 325° F.
- Trim the large pieces of fat from the beef, but don't overdo it because fat will make the meat tender. Pat the meat dry and season both sides generously with salt and pepper.
- In a large Dutch oven, heat 1 tbsp oil over medium high heat until simmering. Brown the meat in 2 batches (1 tablespoon oil for each), about 6-7 minutes per batch. THIS STEP IS CRUCIAL! To achieve a proper sear, it's important to not crowd the pan, and leave the meat undisturbed to develop a nice brown crust before turning with tongs. THIS IS WHERE THE FLAVOR LIVES! Transfer the meat to a plate and set aside.
- Add the onions, mushrooms, garlic and balsamic vinegar; cook, stirring with a wooden spoon and scraping the brown bits from the bottom of the pot, about 5 minutes.
- Add the tomato paste and cook for 1 minute more. Add the beef with its juices back to the pot and sprinkle with the flour. Stir until flour has dissolved, about 1-2 minutes.
- Add the wine, beef broth, bay leaf, thyme, and sugar. Using a wooden spoon, stir and try to loosen any remaining brown bits from the bottom of the pot.
- Bring to a boil, cover with lid, transfer to the preheated oven; braise for 2 hours.
- Remove the pot from the oven and add the potatoes and carrots. Cover and put back in the oven for a further 1 hour and 20 minutes, until the veggies are cooked, broth has thickened, and meat is tender.
- Discard the bay leaf and season to taste.
- Serve warm and garnish with chopped parsley.
This recipe is even better the next day, so keep that in mind if you want to serve this stew at its peak. You can sub 1 tsp of dried thyme for fresh.