This week for CEiMB, I chose to make the Hearty Beef Stew on page 137 of Ellie Krieger's new book, Comfort Food Fix. I could not find the recipe online for you, so you'll just need to buy the book and get all the recipes! It's a very nice book, I am a big fan of Ellie's recipes and style of cooking, so I was more than delighted to find it under the Christmas tree this year.
The ingredient list: flour, salt, pepper, paprika, lean stew beef, olive oil, onion, rutabaga or turnip, carrot, russet potato, tomato paste, dry red wine, beef broth, and green peas.
In the book she lists the make-over statistics for each recipe, which I always find interesting to read. While her version was down just 10 calories per portion for the recipe, the sat fat count was reduced from 8g to 3g, the cholesterol count was reduced from 120mg to 50mg, fiber was increased from 4g to 8 g, and sodium was reduced from 1200mg to 340mg. All of that seems to point the finger in the direction of making this one again, replacing it with my go-to beef stew with just one minor change.
The change I would make would be to leave out the flour...the recipe has instructions to coat the meat with flour and then brown it. I know this adds to the thickness of the stew juices, but I just don't care for that flavoring and gumminess that flours gives (not a lot but I am a bit picky, so it was enough that I didn't like it). I much prefer to just brown the spiced meat and let the potatoes do their job of adding a bit of thickness by squashing some of them along the way so the starch from them can thicken things up a bit, and if that doesn't seem satisfactory enough, maybe add a little cornstarch or arrowroot, but only just a little. The potatoes would have worked well here as they were very soft by the time the meat was cooked nicely tender. Other than that, this is a very good beef stew. Definitely a repeat.
To check out other Ellie recipes, you can find the CEiMB blogroll here.