I'm not really a fan of beer or wine, so of course I decided to make a beef stew that involved both. It might seem silly to make a giant pot of stew for two adults and a toddler, but the leftovers are so good that they won't be going to waste. The only thing I'll probably change the next time I make this will be to increase the meat to two pounds. Otherwise, this recipe doesn't need much tweaking!
Drunken Irish Stew
- 2 Tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1¼ pounds stew beef, cut into 1-inch pieces
- 7 large garlic cloves, crushed
- 1 cup red wine
- 1 cup Guinness
- 6 cups beef stock (or broth)
- 3 Tablespoons tomato paste
- 1½ tablespoons white sugar
- 2 Tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
- 1 Tablespoon dried thyme
- 4 bay leaves
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 1 pound russet potatoes, cut into ½-inch pieces (peeled or unpeeled, gentleman’s choice)
- 1 pound baby red potatoes, cut into ½-inch pieces (again, gentleman’s choice)
- 4 stalks celery, chopped
- 2 cups carrots, peeled, cut into ½-inch pieces
- 1 large yellow or white onion, roughly chopped
- 1 Tablespoon cornstarch + 1 Tablespoon water
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- Heat the olive oil in a heavy, large pot over medium-high heat.
- Add the beef stew meat and sauté until brown on all sides, about 5 to 7 minutes.
- Add garlic cloves and sauté another minute, until fragrant.
- Add the beef stock, red wine, Guinness, tomato paste, sugar, Worcestershire sauce, thyme, and bay leaves. Stir to combine and bring the mixture to a boil.
- When boiling, reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer for one hour. Stir occasionally to prevent burning.
- In another large pot, melt the butter over medium heat until slightly foaming.
- Add the potatoes, celery, onion and carrots, sautéing until golden, about 15 minutes. Set aside until the stew has simmered for one hour.
- Add vegetables to beef stew and simmer uncovered until vegetables and beef are tender, about 30 to 40 minutes.
- Mix 1 tablespoon cornstarch with 1 tablespoon cold water until combined. Add slowly to the stew, stirring for 1 minute until thickened.
- Discard the bay leaves and remove any fat that may have accumulated on top. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Getting the right amount of salt is key in the last step. The wine and beer make this stew require a little more salt than you might think. Add it slowly, taste frequently, and enjoy!