{Spring Beef Stew}

This little number is comfort food for spring, it cooks all in one pot which rocks and I just love those little baby carrots, so sweet. Just so you are sure its a spring stew you serve it with your favourite green salad and although its really rich and tasty its not as heavy as a winter stew, there is no wine or flour involved so it keeps it light. 

We had it last night and it makes a big batch, so some has gone into the freezer which is always a bonus and its easy, not fast but easy and if you are hanging around the house for an afternoon and are going to end up hungry then why not have this simmering away smelling all delicious.

...the stew
1 kg beef suitable for slowcooking
olive oil
1 red onion, diced
2 stalks celery, diced
6-8 button mushrooms, diced
3 cloves garlic, sliced
1 litre beef or chicken stock (I used beef)
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 bayleaves
1 cinnamon stick
6-8 kipfler potatoes, peeled and sliced thickly
10 baby carrots, peeled & whole
bunch fresh parsley, chopped

Season the beef with s+p then brown in a heavy casserole style pan with a lid (a la le creuset) remove from the pan and set aside. Add another splash of olive oil and pop in the onion, celery, garlic and mushrooms and cook till soft and just beginning to caramelise. Tip back in the beef, add in the tomato paste and stir for a couple of minutes then tip in the stock, the bayleaves and the cinnamon stick, bring to a gently simmer and skim if necessary.

Now put on the lid and simmer gently for one to one and a half hours, giving it the occasional stir, once that times up remove the cinnamon and add the carrots and potatoes cook gently for another hour till tender lastly stir thru the chopped parsley and lots of fresh cracked pepper.