Monday, November 11, 2013

Argentine Beef Stew

In culinary school, my favorite class was International Cuisine.  Basically, for one week we learned about and cooked another country's/region's cuisine.  Unfortunately, we didn't delve too much into South America.  Our lesson for it was to pull a country out of a hat, research the cuisine, find a recipe for that country and make it.  I pulled Argentina, and I was lucky because our Spanish teacher was from Argentina!  (Yes we had to learn kitchen Spanish as part of our curriculum...)  She gave me this recipe, and I have been in love since!

{Argentine Beef Stew with buttered bread--my real life lunch today!}

Traditionally, this was slow cooked actually IN a pumpkin, but for ease, I've always included a squash in this recipe instead (much easier and cleaner).  However, this was my first time making it in a crock-pot, but I wasn't too worried about how it would turn out.

{Gathering all the ingredients}

{You want to sear this meat and get it nice and brown on the outside!}

{Click here to learn how to de-glaze a pan}

{Apricots are used in this dish.  If for whatever reason, you don't want to add them, then substitute 1/2 cup honey or raisins for them (but you are missing out--just saying)}

{Squashes are difficult to peel and cut.  I found out AFTER I did this that you can buy pre-diced and peeled squash in the produce section--guys save your fingers/hands and buy a bag!}

{Such beautiful colors!}

{Going in the crock-pot}

Argentine Beef Stew
from a wonderful Spanish teacher's family recipe

Serves 6

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 pounds beef stew meat
1 medium onion, diced
5 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup dry red wine
2 cans diced tomatoes
2 peppers, diced (your choice of color)
1 cup dried apricots, diced (sub same amount of raisins or 1/2 cup honey if you desire)
1 large potato, peeled and diced
1 large sweet potato, peeled and diced
1 small acorn or butternut squash, peeled and diced (about 1 pound)
8 oz frozen corn
3 cups beef broth
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
1 tablespoon dried oregano
2 teaspoons dried basil
1 teaspoon chili flakes (optional and can be decreased to taste)
  1. Heat oil in a pan; add meat and sear until browned on most sides.
  2. Remove meat and add onions and garlic; saute until golden brown.
  3. Add wine to onions and garlic to de-glaze the pan.
  4. Place everything in a crock-pot.
  5. Cook on high for 6-7 hours or until potatoes and squash are done.
  6. Season to taste with salt.
  7. Serve.
Have you ever tried a different take on a beloved recipe (like this twist on beef vegetable stew)?  Did you like it?

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