Author Topic: beef stew?  (Read 3000 times)

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Offline coppercone2Topic starter

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beef stew?
« on: January 26, 2024, 04:47:58 am »
I made a first beef stew in a long time with a failed eye of round beef that was way too tough after baking (spiral cut with herbs). I thought maybe it would be edible after 2 hours but no way. It ended up simmering for like 10 hours after that on the pan lol

The tricks

1) timing on addition of potatoes is critical. Add potatoes in the last step and keep it simmering for 20 min or so.
2) add celery and carrot 5 minutes before completion to maintain crunch
3) thyme has a strong taste and adding fresh thyme sprigs to it, then taking them out, even after 5 minutes of cooking adds a good flavor
4) drain the meat well after first fry. When I saw pork stew done without draining it too well, it was actually kinda greasy and did not taste good. IMO drain the beef fat and titrate with butter, or possibly the beef fat if you purify/save it, I think adding a bit of butter near the end is better. I may drain some of the fat after sous vide. After first fry its not yet infused with herbs so its fairly low value IMO, other then pepper flavor. but you add more pepper later. Draining the fat after sous vide might be substantial loss of flavor.  If you fry the meat enough before, there should not be too much left after the sous vide. You get drippings in the bowl as the meat is cooling prior to vac seal, this I save. I just mean like a collander right out of the pan and give it a shake.

5) the potatoes simmer for 20 min and thicken it. This means less corn starch to make it final consistency. Boil corn starch for 5 minutes to get rid of flavor. Just cube and dont soak wash or nothing, the starch thickens it.  Probobly adding a small portion of the potatoes to cook for longer might be a non corn starch thickener (say 10% of the potatoes are over boiled).

6) for a total meal in a bowl, don't skimp on the vegetables. if you make side dishes (which is kinda not the point of beef stew) I guess it makes sense to use less vegetables.
7) fresh and dry thyme have very different flavor. if you get fresh thyme, hang some up so it dries out and you can compare the smell in a few days. airy dry thyme has a slightly minty taste and fresh thyme has a fresh thyme taste (unique). The fresh stuff is enough for a soup, but a mixture of fresh and dry can be used to make a more complex flavor. If you have to choose always choose fresh thyme, dry oregano, not the other way around. I would say the dry thyme product does not do it justice and its not a good subsitute for the proper flavor of a stew.

This time I got a chuck roast that I salted, cubed, browned in a cast iron pan in cube form and then put it in vacuum bags into the sous vide machine with fresh thyme, rosemary, sage, bay leaf, peppercorn and soy sauce. My plan is after 24  hours at 145f to put it on a pot, add sauted mushroom/onion/garlic mix + more thyme, simmer for 20 min, add potatoes, 15 min, add the vegetables, finishing it with spring onion, chives.
« Last Edit: January 26, 2024, 05:06:38 am by coppercone2 »

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