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With St. Patrick’s Day upon us, here’s a delicious (and simple) way to spread that Irish spirit with your friends and family!
“Irish stew is a celebrated Irish dish, yet its composition is a matter of dispute. Purists maintain that the only acceptable and traditional ingredients are neck mutton chops or kid, potatoes, onions, and water. Others would add such items as carrots, turnips, and pearl barley; but the purists maintain that they spoil the true flavour of the dish. The ingredients are boiled and simmered slowly for up to two hours. Mutton was the dominant ingredient because the economic importance of sheep lay in their wool and milk produce and this ensured that only old or economically non-viable animals ended up in the cooking pot, where they needed hours of slow cooking. Irish stew is the product of a culinary tradition that relied almost exclusively on cooking over an open fire. It seems that Irish stew was recognized as early as about 1800…”
-Davidson, Alan. (2006). Oxford Companion to Food. Oxford: Oxford University Press. (p. 409).
1 & 1/2 lbs. Stew Beef, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 lbs. Russet Potatoes, peeled and quartered
2 lbs. Onions, cut into wedges
1 lb. Carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 Garlic Cloves, minced
6 Cups Beef Broth
1 Cup Stout or Guinness Beer
1 TBSP Worcestershire Sauce
2 Bay Leaves
2 TSP Thyme
Butcher’s Rub or Saugatuck Steak Rub
2 TBSP Fresh Parsley, finely chopped (for serving)
[Even though lamb is traditionally used, this recipe uses beef for broader appeal.]
1. Heat roughly 2 TBSP of oil in a pot or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Season the beef well with Butcher’s Rub or Saugatuck Steak Rub. Brown the meat on all sides, working in batches.
2. Remove beef and set aside. In the same pot, sauté the onions until tender. Add the garlic, and cook 1 minute more.
3. Add broth, and scrape the bottom of the pan to deglaze. Return beef to the pan.
4. Add bay leaves, beer, thyme, and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, then cover and simmer 1 hour or until meat is tender.
5. Add potatoes and carrots, cover and cook for 30 to 40 minutes, or until vegetables are tender.
6. Add salt and pepper to taste. Discard the bay leaves, and skim off fat from the surface of the stew.
7. Serve in bowls and sprinkle with chopped parsley.