Recipes from the Grapevine Cottage

Recipes --> Main Courses --> Barley Burger Stew

Barley Burger Stew

We adapted this excellent recipe from Melissa Clark at the New York Times. She served it with noodles, but we added potatoes and skipped serving it over anything. Like all stews, it tastes even better a day or two later and can be frozen.

2 pounds boneless beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch chunks
Kosher salt and black pepper
2 medium red onions
1 to 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more as needed
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
2 cups beef or chicken stock, preferably homemade
1 cup ale or beer
1 rosemary sprig
3 or 4 medium Idaho potatoes cut in chunks
3 carrots, sliced (we used the bagged baby carrots cut in pieces)
1 tablespoon cider vinegar or sherry vinegar, plus more to taste
Chopped chives, for garnish, if desired

Season the beef all over with salt and pepper. Set aside while you prepare the onions. Peel the onions. Cut the onions in half root to stem, then thinly slice them crosswise into half-moons.

Dust the beef cubes lightly with flour. Heat butter and 1 tablespoon oil in a large Dutch oven or other pot over medium-high. Add beef, in batches taking care not to crowd the pan, and sear until it’s good and dark all over, 5 to 6 minutes per batch. Transfer beef cubes to a bowl as they brown.

Add more oil and adjust heat if necessary to prevent burning. Stir in sliced onions and raise heat to medium-high if you lowered it. Cook until pale golden brown and soft, 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant and lightly golden at the edges, 2 to 3 minutes longer.

Make a well in the center of the onions, then stir in tomato paste, coriander and allspice; cook, stirring until paste is darkened, 1 minute. Stir in stock, ale, 1 cup water and rosemary sprig.

Return beef and any juices to the pot and bring to a simmer. Partly cover the pot and simmer gently for 45 minutes. Give the beef a stir, then add onion wedges. Simmer for 15 minutes, then stir in potatoes and carrots and continue to simmer until the meat, onions, potatoes and carrots are tender, 30 to 45 minutes longer.

Stir in vinegar. Taste and add more salt and vinegar if you like. If not thick enough for your taste, thicken with a mixture of some corn starch mixed with cold water, and drizzle in slowly.

We served this with Zinfandel, and it was perfect....