March is the perfect time of year to cook up a pot of pub style beef Guinness stew. On the cusp of spring, we wait to see the first crocus burst from the earth. And while the sun shines, it doesn’t shine reliably. So, prep this pub style beef Guinness stew and pop it in the oven. The subtle, rich sweetness of Guinness stout tenderizes the beef, creating a meal with a luscious mouthfeel and intense flavor. Spend a few hours working on weekend chores. Or curl up with a good book and dream of spring. Dinner will be ready in a few hours.
Pub Style Beef Guinness Stew With Puff Pastry Ingredients
3 strips thick cut bacon, diced
2 1/2 lbs boneless beef ribs (sometimes called “country ribs”) or beef chuck, cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks
4 T olive oil, more if needed
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
3 large garlic cloves, minced
2 white onions, diced into 1/4 inch pieces
3 T all-purpose flour
1 – 14.9 ounce can Guinness stout
Note: according to a study performed by the US Department of Agriculture determining alcohol burn-off when cooking, after simmering for 2.5 hours, 95% of the alcohol left in the stew will cook off. Remember that one large pot of stew is enough for 4-6 servings, however.
4 T tomato paste
4 cups beef stock
3 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch rounds
2 celery stalks, ends trimmed, cut into 1 inch sections
2 large white potatoes, scrubbed, cut into 1 inch chunks
2 bay leaves
3 sprigs thyme
1 package DuFour puff pastry, thawed in refrigerator until ready to use according to package instructions. Keep chilled until ready.
Cook the recipe:
Heat oven to 325°F.
In large Dutch oven (about 8 quart sized) render bacon until lightly browned.
Add beef to pot and sear to deep brown in batches, making sure the pieces don’t touch each other. Remove meat to clean bowl to collect juices. Add olive oil in tablespoons if the pan is becoming dry.
Add onion and garlic to pot, again adding olive oil if pot is dry. Cook until onion is translucent and softened, scraping up browned bits, about 4 minutes.
Sprinkle flour over onion mixture and toss to thoroughly coat.
Carefully pour Guinness into pot, scraping to deglaze pan and loosen browned bits. This is what’s called the “fond” and is what gives the stew its intense flavor.
Add vegetables to pot along with beef, any juices collected in the bowl and beef stock. Add cold water to pot to cover beef, if necessary.
Bring to boil, turn off heat, cover and place pot in oven. Cook for 2 1/2 hours.
Remove pot from oven. Be careful! Pot will be very hot. Remove lid and take out bay leaves and thyme stems. Bring to boil and then reduce heat to simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until liquid thickens enough to leave a trail on the back of a spoon.
For Puff Pastry Topping
Heat oven to 400°F or 325°F for convection oven.
While stew is simmering, follow instructions on dough package and unwrap pastry and place on floured surface. Continue to follow package instructions and cut into rounds, about 3 inches in diameter. Snip with scissors in a decorative pattern to allow air to escape while baking.
Place pastry rounds on greased baking pan or pan lined with parchment paper. Bake for 20 minutes, or until pastry is puffed, lightly browned and crisp to the touch.
Serve Pub Style Beef Guinness Stew in shallow bowls topped with puff pastry.
Award-winning author Emily Kemme writes about human nature, illuminating the everyday in a way that highlights its brilliance. Follow her on her blog, Feeding the Famished, https://www.facebook.com/EmilyKemme, or on Twitter @EmFeedsYou . Life inspired. Vodka tempered.
Interested in reading Emily’s new award-winning novel, Drinking the Knock Water: A New Age Pilgrimage? Find it on Amazon and in Indie bookstores.
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