Ready for a St. Paddy’s Day meal that’s not green? Lucky you — we have the perfect dish. Cubed beef and root veg braise up fork-tender in the rich stout gravy, which tastes ultra-nice with a little mash on the side. Eat it with friends or keep it all for yourself. We won’t judge.
2 tbsp (30 mL) olive oil (approx), divided
900 g stewing beef, cut in 1-inch cubes (see tips)
450 g baby potatoes, halved or quartered if large (see tips)
4 large carrots, cut in 1-inch chunks
1 large turnip, cut in 1-inch chunks
1 cup (250 mL) frozen green peas
Chopped parsley (optional)
Place rack in middle of oven and preheat to 325°F.
In a large, heavy-bottomed Dutch oven, heat 1 tbsp (15 mL) oil over medium heat. Sprinkle beef with 1/2 tsp (2.5 mL) salt and 1/4 tsp (1 mL) pepper. Add half to pot and cook until deep-brown crust forms on bottoms of beef cubes, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn beef to brown remaining sides, 3 to 4 minutes total. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a large plate and set aside. Repeat with remaining beef and 1 tbsp (15 mL) oil.
If pot is dry, add another 1 tbsp (15 mL) oil. Add onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until starting to brown around edges, 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Add tomato paste and cook, stirring constantly, until it turns dark brick red, about 2 minutes. Add flour and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes.
Add broth and stout, stirring to scrape up any browned bits on bottom of pot. Add thyme, bay leaf and remaining 1 tsp (5 mL) salt and 1/4 tsp (1 mL) pepper, and bring to a boil. Stir in beef and any accumulated juices. Cover pot with lid and transfer to preheated oven; cook, without lifting lid, for 2 hours.
Remove from oven. Stir potatoes, carrots and turnip into stew until vegetables are coated. Return pot to oven and cook, uncovered, for 30 minutes.
Stir stew to submerge any browned bits on surface and cook, uncovered, until vegetables are tender, about 45 minutes more. About 2 minutes before removing stew from oven, stir in peas. Return to oven and heat until warmed through.
Remove stew from oven. Taste and season with more salt and pepper, if desired. Sprinkle with parsley (if using) before serving.
For an even richer stew, skip the stewing beef and use a well-marbled boneless roast, like inside round, cut into 1-inch cubes.
You can swap in thin-skinned, waxy potatoes of any size for the baby potatoes. Simply cut them into 1-1/2-inch chunks.
The key to good browning is making sure the beef isn’t crowded in the pot. You can cook it in 2 batches in a single pot, as directed, or use 2 pots at the same time. If you do the latter, add a little bit of water to each pot after the beef is removed. Scrape up the browned bits on the bottoms of the pots and add that liquid to your broth to make a full 3 cups (750 mL). Continue cooking the stew in 1 of the pots.