Hearty Beef Soup

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About three weeks ago, New England got hit with a nor’easter, and they’re forecasting another one soon.  The first one knocked out power in our area for four hours—but with a back-up generator and a pot of this hearty beef soup, Roger and I weathered the storm just fine.

This soup is aptly named as it is indeed hearty.  It’s not your garden variety of beef soup with a thin broth and veggies.  I’d say it’s more like halfway between a brothy beef soup and a beef stew.  It’s a soup with oompf!  The ingredients are ordinary, but the combination is sublime.

In years past, I’ve tried stew beef in recipes that call for extended cooking which the beef needs in order to tenderize.  I’ve found that stew beef doesn’t compare to boneless chuck roast, so I highly recommend you use that cut of beef.

The weatherman says it’s time to make another pot of this delicious soup!

Fran’s Notes

For those interested, New England is particularly susceptible to nor’easters which are caused when cold air swoops down from Canada and meets up with warmer air coming up and off the Atlantic.  It creates a cyclone-like storm which blows counter-clockwise, northeast to southwest, and causes heavy rain and/or snow to hit the land mass rather than go out to the ocean.

One year ago:  Bailey’s Irish Cream Sandwich Cookies

Two years ago:  McDonald’s Copycat Shamrock Shake

Three years ago:  Pistachio and Chocolate Cake

Four years ago:  White Chocolate Buttercream Frosting with Bailey’s Irish Cream

Five years ago:  Chocolate Stout Cake

Hearty Beef Soup

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Ingredients

  • 2 lbs. boneless beef chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 1 tsp. paprika
  • 1 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
  • 2 tsp. kosher salt, divided
  • 2 tbl. olive oil
  • 2 tbl. unsalted butter
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 32 oz. (4 cups) beef stock
  • 1 cup Cabernet Sauvignon
  • 2 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 to 1 1/2 tsp. dried Italian seasoning (adjust to taste)
  • 4 cups chopped red potatoes, bite size pieces (about 1/2″)
  • 3 cups chopped baby carrots, bite size pieces
  • Fresh parsley to garnish, optional

Directions

Trim hard fat and any silver skin (white and silvery looking) from beef and cut into approximately 1″ cubes.

Combine flour, paprika, pepper and 1 teaspoon salt in a large 1-gallon resealable bag.  Seal and shake to combine.  Add beef and shake until well coated.

Warm olive oil in a large Dutch oven (or heavy bottom pot), over medium high heat.  Once you can feel warmth when holding your hand 6 inches from the pot, add butter.  Once butter is melted, carefully add beef—first removing beef from flour and shaking gently to remove loose flour.  Place coated beef in pan, one piece at a time, brown on all sides.  Do not crowd the pot; add about half of the beef at a time.  Turn pieces until all sides are browned and remove them and place in your upside-down pot lid (why dirty a dish?).  Once the first batch is cooked, add the second batch and repeat.

Meanwhile, prepare onion and garlic.  Onion should be diced and garlic minced.  Set aside.

Once all beef is browned, add onion and garlic.  Cook until translucent.  Add wine and deglaze pan by scraping up the browned bits at the bottom of the pan.  Add beef stock, Worcestershire, Italian seasoning, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt.  Stir to combine.  Return beef to the pot.  Cover and bring to a boil.  Once boiling, reduce to a simmer.  Allow soup to simmer 40 minutes.

Meanwhile, prepare potatoes and carrots.  Cut vegetables into bite-sized pieces.  Set aside until the beef has simmered for 40 minutes.  Now, add potatoes and carrots.  Stir to coat vegetables and cover.  Simmer an additional 40 to 50 minutes or until vegetables are fork tender.  Taste broth.  If necessary, adjust seasonings to your preference

Garnish with fresh parsley if desired.

Fran’s Notes

If you do not keep it Italian seasoning on hand, combine 1 teaspoon dried basil, 1 teaspoon dried rosemary, 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano and 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme.  You will have extra left over to use on salad with an oil and vinegar dressing.  It won’t go to waste

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Source:   Slightly adapted recipe from The Slow Roasted Italian

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