Sunday, September 30, 2012

beef stew with homemade bread bowls

To celebrate my 100th post and meeting my goal of posting every day for the last month, I will share my favorite fall recipe with you! 

Bread bowls (makes 4)
1 1/4 cups warm water
1 envelope of active dry yeast (1/4-ounce)
1 tsp salt
1 tbs vegetable oil
3 1/2 cups flour 
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tbs cornmeal
1/2 egg white
1/2 tbs water

Stew (makes 4 small portions, or 2 full-sized with leftovers)
2 lbs stew beef
2 tbs vegetable oil
4 cups of water (separated)
1 bottle of red wine of choice (separated)
2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
3 cloves of garlic, minced
3 bay leaves
2 medium onions, roughly diced 
2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp ground pepper
1/2 tsp paprika
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 dash ground cloves
1 dash ground nutmeg
3 large carrots, sliced
3 ribs celery, chopped
3 small/medium potatoes, diced
10-15 mushrooms, sliced

1. For the bread bowls, stir together the warm water and yeast in a large bowl. Let stand for 5 minutes. Add flour gradually, beating at a medium speed with an electric mixer with dough hooks until soft dough forms.


2. Turn dough out onto a floured surface, knead until smooth and elastic. Place in a lightly oiled bowl and turn to grease. Cover and let rise in a warm place for at least 1 hour, or until doubled in bulk. If it is chilly in your home, heat oven to 100 degrees or preheat oven to lowest temperature and then turn off heat.

3. Meanwhile, begin the stew. Brown the beef in the vegetable oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.

4. Add diced onion. Stir for 4 minutes and add minced garlic as the beef juices start collecting in the pot.

5. Add 2 cups of water, 2 cups of red wine, 1 tbs Worcestershire sauce, bay leaves, salt, sugar, pepper, paprika, cayenne pepper, nutmeg, and ground cloves. Stir, simmer, and cover for 1 1/2 hours, checking occasionally.


6. After dough has risen, place on floured surface again, punch down and knead. Create 4 small dough balls. Place on lightly greased baking sheet sprinkled with cornmeal. Cover and let rise for another hour (or until they gain in size again).

7. After the hour and a half of covered simmering has completed, remove bay leaves and add chopped vegetables to the mixture, along with another 2 cups of water and 2 cups of red wine. Sprinkle more salt and pepper. Drink rest of red wine while cooking. Cover and simmer for another 1 hour.

8. Occasionally uncover to stir and smash beef bits to spread about.

9. Once the separated dough balls have risen again, preheat oven to 400 degrees. Mix egg white with a splash of water. Brush egg mixture over dough. Sprinkle salt and topping of choice (I used sesame seeds, so they would look like big toasty hamburger buns!) and pop into preheated oven for 15 minutes.

10. After 15 minutes, remove bread bowls and brush with remaining egg mixture. Pop back into oven for 12 more minutes, until crispy and toasty.

11. Let cool on cooling rack. When cool, cut top off of bowl and scoop out the center.

 12. Remove cover from stew, continue to stir and mash beef until to desired consistency. If you prefer a thicker stew, feel free to mix in a bit of flour.

13. Scoop into bread bowls, serve, and enjoy on a chilly evening!
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