Stew and hash dishes are great foods don’t you think? Yeah, they do take a some time to cook, it’s definitely not fastfood, but they’re so full of flavor and lovely smell. While your stew is simmering over low heat all flavors of the meat, the vegetables, fruits, herbs and spices fuse together to make it a flavorful little party in your pan! It’s friday now, so I guess you’re considering what you’ll be eating this weekend and if you happen to already know what you’ll be eating, let this recipe change your mind! :)
While writing this recipe I wondered where stews originated from, that’s one of my pesky habits, I always need to look things up at wikipedia, wherever I am. It got me searching into stews and it might just be one of the oldest cooking methods we know. People made stew-like dishes between the 8th and 4th centuries BC! I will not quote how they did it, because it were rather distasteful methods…errh..let’s just leave it at that..and if you’re too curious check it here at the wiki page.
Stews, and especially beef stew, is a common winter dish in the Netherlands. We eat a lot of stews inspired by the Belgian, French and even Indonesian cuisine. I don’t know if there’s a specific name for this stew recipe but I can tell you, it is tasty! YUM! Can’t wait to have it again!
The preparation is actually quite easy and although making a stew may seem time consuming it’s not that bad. It takes you about 15-20 minutes to prepare and then you can just let it simmer for the next 2 or 3 hours and do some very important stuff you still have to do, oh wait it’s weekend, forget that.
For this beef stew you obviously need beef, I used beef clod or beef shoulder and cut into dice sized cubes. besides beef you need onion, apple, fennel, apple syrup or apple butter as the main ingredients and a few spices to add more tast! Below in the recipe you’ll find the step by step recipe for how to make this Dutch beef stew!
I’ve noticed that ‘crockpot’ recipes seem to be quite popular. Me, living in the Netherlands, found out about these things a few months ago. It seems as if crockpots are not as common over here as they are in the U.S, Canada and Australia. I made this beef stew in a regular good old enameled casserole on the stove, but I think you could make it in a crockpot as well, right?
I might be looking into buying a crockpot over the next few weeks, so if you have any suggestions or pros and cons for crockpot vs. good old pan? I’ll be happy to know what your experience is! Let me know in the comments what you think.
The dutch beef stew recipe
- 2 pounds (1kg) Beef shoulder
- 2 Apples
- 1 Fennel bulb
- 3 Onions
- 2 Bay leaves
- 5 dried Juniper berries
- 1 oz (30gr) flour
- 3 cloves
- 2 tbsp apple butter / apple syrup
- 1 oz (30gr) cooking butter
- a splash of Olive oil
- 1 or 2 beef stock cubes (to taste)
- 4-6 medium sized Potatoes
- Heat the cooking butter and olive oil in a large pan or casserole over medium heat.
- Cut the beef and apple into dice sized cubes and chop the onions roughly.
- When the butter is melten add the beef and saute until it's brown.
- Add the onion and saute for a minute or two, add the flour and stir until it's spread out through the pan. Now add water until everything is just underwater. Add 1 or 2 beef stock cubes and stir until dissolved.
- Now you can add the bay leaves, juniper berries, cloves and the apple cubes.
- Let this simmer on low heat for about 3 hours. (you don't want it to boil, but just nearly so)
- Cut the potatoes in wedges and add them when you've got about 20 minutes of the 3 hours left. They'll be done when the beef stew is ready too!
- Serve with a dark beer or a good red wine and Enjoy!