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Sunday Dinner: Guinness Beef Stew

St. Patrick's day is coming up and I thought it would be fun to celebrate with (aka: a nice excuse to make) a hearty Guinness Stew. I had been looking through several different recipes when the latest issue of Cook's Country arrived in my mailbox and what do you know, there on page 8 was a recipe for a well-tested Guinness Beef Stew. Since they usually have pretty good recipes, I have decided that I'm going to give theirs a try. This recipe is an all-day affair (although the work required is pretty minimal), so why not go out and get your supplies and join me?! I'll take pictures of my endeavor and post them up here later this evening (assuming there's no kitchen fiascos...). To check out the recipe,

Guinness Beef Stew
From Cook's Country March 2007

4 lbs boneless beef chuck stew meat
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 onions, chopped
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 1/2 cups Guinees Draught (not the extra stout)
1 tbsp light brown sugar
1 tsp dried thyme
1 oz bittersweet chocolate, chopped
2 bay leaves
5 carrots, peeled and cut into 1" chunks
1 lb parsnips, peeled and cut into 1" chunks
1 1/2 lb baby red potatoes, scrubbed clean
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
2 tbsp minced parsley (fresh)

Pat beef dry with paper towels and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Heat 2 tsp oil in large skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Cook half of beef until browned on all-sides, about 8 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker insert and repeat with additional 2 tsp oil and remaining beef.

Add remaining 2 tsp oil, onions, and 1/4 tsp salt to skillet and cook until onions are lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add broth, 1 1/4 cups stout, sugar, thyme, chocolate and bay leaves - bring to boil using wooden spoon to scrape up browned bits. Transfer to slow cooker insert.

Add carrots, parsnips, and potatoes to slow cooker insert. Cover and cook on low until meat is tender, 9-10 hours (or cook on hight for 6-7 hours). Set slow cooker to high. Whisk flour and remaining 1/4 cup beer until smooth, then stir mixture into slow cooker. Cook, covered, until sauce thickens, about 15 minutes. Stir in parsley, season with salt and pepper, and discard bay leaf. Serve!

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