Sunday Night Stew

Sunday Night Stew


Here’s what you need for the stew!

Start by salting and peppering the meat on both sides.

Then dice up an onion…

And mince up some garlic.

Heat some olive oil in a big ol’ honkin’ pot over medium-high (or high, if you can HANDLE the heat!) heat…

Then, when the oil is hot, drop in a pat of butter. It’ll melt really quickly!

Sorry to shout so much!

Throw in half the meat in a single layer…

And turn it all over to the other side when it starts to brown.

When it’s browned for a couple of minutes, remove the meat to a plate.

Then throw in the rest of the meat and brown it, too.

Reduce the heat just a bit, then throw in the onions and garlic…

And stir it around for a couple of minutes to let it cook.

Please don’t be alarmed by how brown the pot looks. I looked out the window and got a little distracted. Charlie was looking up at the top of a tree in our yard, and he would not take his eyes off the top of the tree, even when I knocked on the kitchen window and yelled “Charlie! What are you looking at? Charlie! Charlie?” Then I saw a squirrel running up and down the trunk of the tree, stopping just short of Charlie’s height. Then, just as Charlie would start to run toward the squirrel, the squirrel would cackle and run back up the tree. I cracked up, and then I was angry. What kind of sick squirrel would get a kick out of taunting a poor, defenseless, malodorous Basset?

What has the animal world come to?

And besides, it worked out fine. The stew was marvy.

Throw in the tomato paste…

And stir it into the onions and garlic. Let it cook for a minute or so…

Then pour in the beef stock, stirring around the stuff in the pan as you pour it in.

Once you’ve got it all poured in…

Add the plate of meat…flavorful juices and all!

Stir in the meat to combine…

Then add a little salt and pepper…

And just a leetle bit of sugar. About a half a teaspoon or so.

Back to the savory, add a few dashes of Worcestershire…

And briefly bring it all to a bawl. I mean boil. Then reduce the heat to low…

And violently put the lid on the pot and let the stew…stew!

Actually, don’t violently put the lid on the pot. You might smash your thumb and then you’d be mad at me. This would upset me greatly. I would be in a bad mood. Then I’d get mad at the cat for looking at me funny, and this would upset the cat greatly. And the cycle would continue.

So what I’m saying is, set the lid on the pot gently!

And I love you.

The stew needs to simmer for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, so you’ll have plenty o’ time to dice the turnips and carrots. You can peel the turnips as you would an apple, or you could cut off the tops and bottoms…

Then use a vegetable peeler to get rid o’ the skin.

Cut the turnips into slices…

Cut the slices into sticks…

Then cut the sticks into a dice!

I love turnips, man. They’re so…

So…

Turnipy.

The next time Marlboro Man walks by wearing Wranglers and chaps, I’m going to tell him to stop looking all turnipy. He won’t know what I mean, but you and I will both know that I mean delicious.

Peel some carrots…

And dice them the same size as the turnips.

Set these aside till you need ’em later!

The stew is still stewing, so you have time to get started on the mashed potatoes. Peel five pounds of russets, singing “Oh, What a Beautiful Morning,” even though it’s late afternoon.

Rinse the peeled potatoes, then cut them into quarters and throw them into the nearest pot you see.

Cover the potatoes with water…

And boil them until they’re nice and fork-tender.

Drain them in a colander, then throw them back into the same pot over low heat…

Then mash the potatoes for a couple of minutes in order to let a bunch of the steam escape.

Sometimes I rush and don’t do this step, but I always regret it the next morning. Letting a bunch of the steam out gives the mashed potatoes a great texture and ensures they won’t be too watery/runny/desperate/pitiful.

Grab a package of cream cheese and cut it into pieces…

Then do the same with a stick of butter.

Next, throw the cream cheese and butter into the potatoes…

And drizzle in some heavy cream.

Next sprinkle in a little salt, pepper, and seasoned salt.

Then mash all the ingredients in…

And stir it to make sure it’s all combined.

You can just keep them warm with the lid on the pot if you’d like, or if you want to bake them later, just plop the taters into a buttered baking dish…

And smear the surface so that it’s all evened out.

Back to the stew! It’s really bubbling away and looking thicker, so throw the turnips and carrots right into the pot. Stir them around, then put the lid back on the pot for 30 minutes or so. Make sure there’s still enough liquid in the pot; if it seems too thick, you can splash in 1/2 cup to 1 cup of beef broth.

Thirty minutes later…ahhhh. Look at that. The carrots and turnips are tender, and the juices are nice and thick.

And the color…mmmm. Very, very appealing.

Last thing: mince up some parsley…

And throw it into the stew. Stir it around, give the stew a taste, and add more of whatever you think it needs.

To serve it up, spoon a nice helping of mashed potatoes into a bowl…

And spoon in some stew right beside it. Make sure you get plenty of juices in there, because they will pool around the mashed potatoes and make you very, very happy.

Sprinkle on a little more parsley.

Yummy!

You’ll absolutely love this, guys.

I speak from experience here.

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