How To Save a Stew- Wifey Style

In honor of the NCAA Football Championship game, I decided I’d cook a real “manly” meal for Alex.

So I sent him a list of ideas and OF COURSE he choose: Beef Stew.

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What’s wrong with that you ask? Oh, just 1. that it’s his favorite meal from childhood 2. I’d never made it before 3. I don’t eat beef so I can’t try it and season as I go.

BUT in true Wifey fashion- I “manned” up and accepted the challenge.

It was guys. It really was.

In the end- 7 hours later- it was pretty much exactly what Al was dreaming of and he ate two helpings and took the rest to work.

How did it go wrong and then end up right?

Let’s get Wife’ed Up.

Wifey’s What A Croc Beef Stew over rice

What You Need/Grocery List:

  • 2 lbs beef stew chunks (I used only 1b and it wasn’t enough) They sell this in the butcher section, I got mine from Whole Foods- organic
  • 3 carrots or a bag of frozen sliced carrots
  • 1 bag of frozen peas
  • 3 large potatoes
  • 1 large yellow onion
  • 1 box or can of beef gravy – you can also use beef stock, I used gravy for added POW
  • 1/2 cup Worstesture sauce
  • 2 tbs of tomato paste
  • flour- just make sure you have lots on hand
  • 2 bay leaves
  • salt & pepper
  • white rice- instant or not- it’s your jam
  • a big ziplock bag
  • vegetable or canola oil
  • a croc pot or slow cooker

What To Do:

  • cut potatoes into large chunks. I halved, then quartered, then cut them so they were all about the same size. Think- you need to use a knife and fork to cut for a bite- drop into pot

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  • cut onion into slices- drop in pot

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  • if you’re using fresh carrots- cut into circles or get fancy and slice of each rough side so it looks like a box and cut little squares- dump into pot
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i did both- squares and rounds

  • NOW- HERE IS WHERE THINGS WENT “WRONG” FOR ME. I MISUNDERSTOOD THE RECIPES I WAS ADAPTING THIS FROM AND DUMPED THE FLOUR INTO THE POT. YOU ARE ACTUALLY SUPPOSED TO USE THE FLOUR FOR SOMETHING ELSE. IT ENDED UP BEING MORE THAN OK, BECAUSE IT WAS TOO WATERY SO THE FLOUR HELPED BUT I WILL EXPLAIN HOW TO DO THIS AT THE END INSTEAD.
  • dump about 1/2 cup of frozen peas into the pot. At this point I freaked – hence no photos of the peas.
  • heat a pan with a couple tsps of canola or vegetable oil- as you prep the meat
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you will get no photos of the next few steps because I was in frantic mode

  • take a 1/2 cup of flour, 1 tbsp of salt, 1 tbsp of pepper and the meat and put them into a big ziplock bag- shake and coat so the meat is evenly covered.
  •  I ALSO BIFFED THIS AND JUST COATED IT ON THE TABLE- IT SURVIVED.
  • take the meat in batches and sear each side in the hot pan until the meat is brown. SEAR it- don’t over cook it. Just make sure it hits almost all sides and turns a different color. This happens quick- so I advise to do about three chunks at a time. When they are brown- drop em into the pot
  • pour your box or can of gravy over the top of everything
  • dump 1/2 cup of Worsteschire on top of everything
  • add 2 bay leaves to the mix
  • sprinkle 1 tbsp salt and 1 tbsp pepper up in there too

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  • put your Croc pot on HIGH and set for 6 hours- place the lid on top
  • stir every few hours or so (if you can- if not- no biggie) and add a pinch of salt and pepper with each stir
  • after about 6 hours your stew should come out pretty BOSS. serve over noodles, rice, with bread- or solo.

HERE IS THERE THINGS WENT VERY WRONG- AGAIN FOR THE WIFEY… PLUS! HOW TO FIX A WATERY STEW

I opened my pot around the 5 hour mark to show Alex and wasn’t greeted by a beautiful thick stew- rather it looked more like soup. There was zero thickness. I silently freaked and went to the internet to search for how other Wifeys fixed their issue.

Here’s what worked for me:

  • take out 2-3 cups of stew liquid (try to only get the liquid) and dump into a sauce pot
  • add 2-3 tbsp of tomato paste and stir
  • add about 1/4 cup of flour and whisk over medium to low heat until there are no lumps in your gravy.
  • still not thick enough? slowly add flour while you whisk – a bit at a time- until it’s how you’d like it
  • add 1 tsp salt and pepper, stir
  • return your now THICK gravy to the pot and stir with the rest of the stuff to combine
  • let it continue to cook for the final hour
  • serve your perfection with confidence- they never even knew there was an issue! WINK.

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