Stew is one of my family's favorite dishes. Everyone is surprised that there's cranberry juice in this recipe - it really gives it a unique flavor.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons salt, optional
- 2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 4 bacon strips, cut into 1-inch pieces, optional
- 10 small onions
- 2 cups cranberry juice, divided
- 1 can (14-1/2 ounces) beef broth
- 4 whole cloves
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon dried marjoram
- 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
- 5 medium carrots, cut into chunks
- 5 medium potatoes, peeled and cubed
- 2 cups frozen peas, thawed
- In a small bowl, combine flour and salt if desired. Place half of the four mixture in large resealable plastic bag. Add beef, a few pieces at a time, and shake to coat. Reserve remaining flour mixture; set aside.
- Place beef in a Dutch oven. Add bacon if desired. Bake, uncovered, at 400° for 30 minutes.
- Add onions, 1-1/2 cups cranberry juice, broth and seasonings. Cover and bake at 350° for 1 hour.
- Add carrots and potatoes; bake 1 hour longer or until meat and vegetables are tender.
- Combine reserved flour mixture and remaining cranberry juice until smooth; stir into stew. Cover and bake 30 minutes longer. Remove bay leaf. Add peas; return to the oven for 5 minutes or until heated through. Yield: 10 servings.
Originally published as Savory Beef Stew in Country Extra November 1996, p51
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