Comfort Time : Beef Stew Casserole.

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Happy Hump Day!!!

First off this is RICH && the meat takes some TIME. Like overnight or all day at work time. Not in the way that will pay your car payment or any crazy credit card bills you have. Although that would be nice. But if your going all the way for comfort foods this is the way to go. I tried to not cook too many dishes with potatoes, and heavy cream, and cheese to show I can cook dishes that are not full of “bad” good flavors. There is no way I can give up  cheese though. Ever.  The past few days have actually been like autumn. Its been windy, rainy, and cold.

Also keeping in the pumpkin spirit, I made some delicious real pumpkin muffins. ( real = can) I want to actually cook a pumpkin and make a pumpkin pie (ick) but that is the goal for this season.  Shall we get to the food?

The list of ingredients is well…..long. Worth it? YES! I made enough so we could have lots of leftovers. Or so I thought, we ended up having  a few spoonfuls left. Oops.  The recipe I got used a beef herb bag. I’ve seen them once in a blue moon, but have never used one, and to be honest where I live they are not that common.  I got this one from KayoticKitchen

Beef Stew:

2 pounds beef stew, cubed
1 large onion, chopped
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tbsp grandma’s molasses (I used 3)
3 cloves
salt and pepper
1 beef bouillon cube
1 1/2 to 2 cups of water
2 tbsp cornstarch
butter
Potato topping:

2 pound potatoes
1 can cream of mushroom soup ( I’m not a fan of this soup in general, but I really think it brings the meal together)
3 tbsp sour cream
5 tbsp milk
1 tsp seasoned salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
2 to 3 oz sharp cheddar ( use as much as you want though, maybe only 1/2 the bag or 1/2 the block should be plenty)
handful panko
sprinkling dried parsley ( for some decor)

First step cook the beef, Sprinkle with some salt and pepper.

Remove from the pan, leaving any juices in. throw in the onions, and cook until tender. 5 minutes usually does the trick.

Add in the garlic  & cloves. Cook 1-3 minutes before throwing in the beef again.  Cook a few minutes. I  say about 3.

** Please don’t actually throw the ingredients in, that’s caveman behavior. Unless you are a caveman, then by all means throw your little heart out.**

Put the meat into a crock pot, add molasses, water, beef bullion cubes, and if you want 1-2 bay leafs. Cook 10-12 hours. Yes that long.

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I usually don’t read ahead on some of the recipes I try, but in this case I’m glad I did. And the beef was so tender and delicious, not that I tried a lot of it. Also side note: You can always adjust the ratios, and cook more beef for beef stew, or to just to chew on for the cavemen who are cooking this.

The next day, or in the afternoon, take the meat out and let cool. I cooked mine overnight and put it in the fridge while I went to work. It lets the fat come to the top and you can scrape/scoop it off.

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In a bowl combine the soup, sour cream and milk. This is part of the “topping” and put it aside.

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In a pan/pot warm up the beef. Add some water to the corn starch in a cup and pour in the beef to thicken.

Then the work starts. This is when you cut up your potatoes, thinly. like 3mm thin, don’t measure though, just cut them thin. Also grate your cheese. You can always do this before you warm up the beef too.

Scoop the beef out with a slotted spoon into a baking dish (9×11) so you don’t have too much sauce, which you should save and use for anything. It’s wonderful.  I added a little bit more sauce to mine, why not.

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This is why your potatoes needed to be thin, not to cook faster, well that helps, but because you need to cover your dish twice. On top of the beef layer half of the he potatoes, then spread 1/2 that soup/cream topping onto that. Repeat with the potatoes again, and the remaining topping onto that.  Then sprinkle the cheese onto it with a handful of panko for a bit of crunch. Parsley on top makes it look like it has some more garnish.

Cover with a sheet of foil and cook at  350 for 45-50 minutes. Remove the foil and cook for another 45 minutes. I let mine sit for a few minutes to cook and come together.

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Enjoy.

xo Jo

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