Fall Beef Stew

I love Autumn. I love going to my local orchard and picking the last of the apples and grabbing a few squash. The gold and fiery leaves stir up a hunger for hearty dishes, leaving me ready to get into the kitchen whenever I can.

One of my fall and winter staples is a simple beef stew. Slow cooked meats and vegetables with a rich broth cannot be beat. This stew is best served with a light sprinkle of sharp cheddar cheese and lots crusty bread on the side.


2 T vegetable oil
1# boneless top round steak, cut into 3/4 inch cubes
4 ounces mushrooms, quartered
1 medium yellow onion, medium dice
2 stalks celery, medium dice
2 small carrots, peeled and sliced into coins
1 parsnip, peeled and sliced into coins
2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 cup dry red wine
1 quart vegetable stock
2 bay leaves
1 sprig thyme
4 fresh sage leaves, chopped
1 sprig rosemary, or 1/4 teaspoon ground dried rosemary
1# small red-skinned, yukon gold, or purple potatoes. I used a mix of all three
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

How to:

In a heavy dutch oven or pot, turn heat to medium and add oil. When hot, add beef cubes. Stir to coat with oil and let cook for about 10 minutes, then stir. Let cook 5 more minutes until the beef is nicely browned and dark bits begin to stick to the bottom of the pot. This is called fond, and is packed with flavor. If your beef released a lot of liquid you may need to cook longer to allow to evaporate.

Add mushrooms, stir and let cook 5 minutes. Add onion, celery, carrots, parsnip, and garlic.

Quickly pour in wine and stir. While stirring, be sure to scrape the bottom and sides of the pot to release all of the fond into the wine. Bring to a boil and allow the wine to reduce for approximately 4 minutes.

Add stock, bay, thyme, sage, rosemary, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and turn heat down so the liquid simmers. Cover with lid and cook for 1 hour.

After an hour, add potatoes and stir. Add more stock or water if necessary to just cover. Cook at a simmer for 30 minutes, or until potatoes are fork tender, but not falling apart. Remove bay, thyme, and rosemary sprigs.

Adjust salt and pepper and serve in warmed bowls. Top with grated sharp cheddar and crusty bread on the side.

I hope you try this easy stew out this fall and let me know how you like it. On cold, cloudy days, this is one of my go-to meals.

David is a contributing writer for FOLK and has been a cook in fine dining restaurants for the last 7 years in Madison, WI and Columbus, OH. His favorite meals are simple and easy to make and brings family and friends together around the table. He is also the designer and proprietor for BasilicusJones, a company that specializes in re-purposed home accessories. You can contact him at DavidG.folk@gmail.com or www.facebook.com/BasilicusJones.


  1. I'm totally making this, David! Looks wonderful... any suggestions to add if done in a slow cooker?


  2. It's perfect for a slow cooker. Simply brown meat and vegetables, glaze and then add to slow cooker with the remaining ingredients. I normally set it on high for 4 hours, or low for 6-8. For a lighter flavor, don't brown anything; just add everything to the pot and turn on.

  3. Hi..I am your newest follower...ordered the magazine...followed you on facebook...yea, I'm hooked. Sherron

  4. This look delicious. Real comfort food. Now if it would just get cold here!


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