This is a recipe that I love to make if I’m craving soft, tender beef and a warm bowl of dinner. I like one pot, one utensil meals. Am I lazy? You bet.
My family are homebodies. I love an afternoon indoors with the children playing and a pot of stew stewing. I found some lovely beef steaks the other day on sale in my local grocery. I had thought of surprising my husband with a grilled steak dinner, but a rain and wind storm threw that plan right out of the window. Instead, I decided to stew up the beef with potatoes, carrots, peas and mushrooms. It’s the kind of stew that can be done midweek; if you only have an hour before dinner and can manage fifteen minutes to get it started, you’ll easily be able to walk away from it until you plate up.
If you’re not a fan of soured cream or crème fraiche to stroganoff the stew, you’ll still have a hearty, flavourful soup, but I think the creaminess and light tang accompany the potatoes perfectly. Traditionally, you’ll find pasta in a stroganoff recipe, but this is my one-pot, gluten-free, family-friendly version.
- 1-1.5lb beef steak (approximately two medium-sized steaks) cubed
- 1 tsp veg or olive oil
- 1 tsp garlic granules or fresh crushed garlic
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- 1 tsp beef stock concentrate
- 1 cup chopped onion (I use frozen)
- 1 cup chopped/julienned carrot (approximately one medium carrot)
- 1 cup chopped mushrooms of choice (I finely chop so they disappear and the kids don’t know)
- 1 cup petit peas (I use frozen)
- 15-20 baby potatoes (small Maris Pipers)
- 4 cups of water
- ½ cup (or more to taste) soured cream or crème fraiche
- Salt and pepper to taste
Using a nice deep pot over a medium-high heat, add the cubed beef, oil and dry spices. Coat the beef with the spices with a quick toss in the pot, and then allow the beef to brown deeply on at least two sides. If the bottom of the pot starts to stick a bit, don’t worry, that’s flavour that will come up with the water.
Once the beef is browned, but not cooked through, add the beef stock concentrate and a splash of water to dissolve. I do this right in the pot and add just enough water to allow me to loosen the concentrate.
Add the onion, carrots and mushroom to the beef and stock mixture and allow the onions to just go translucent; you don’t want the beef to cook completely.
Add the potatoes and peas, then cover with water. Bring the water to the boil and then reduce the heat to medium-low, just enough to maintain a simmer. You can walk away from this for up to 45 minutes, checking occasionally to be sure it’s not sticking to the bottom or needs a top-up of water. I don’t bother peeling my potatoes, and only halve the largest, so I like to give this a while to bubble. If you are pressed for time, you can peel and cube the potatoes and halve the cooking time, but be careful they don’t turn to mash.
Once the potatoes are soft and the broth has reduced by about half, add the soured cream/crème fraiche and turn off the heat. I probably use a little more than ½ cup, but my family all love soured cream on potatoes. The beef is so tender by now, it won’t even need a knife. I’ve shown the kids plate version and my warmer bowl of succulent stroganoff stew to tempt you. This is a simple recipe that absolutely oozes flavor, give it a go!