poor jab has been feeling ill this week. he has a bad habit of coming down with something around xmas time every year. as they say, tis the season. he also has the bad habit of not calling out sick from work, such a work horse is he that he'll suffer on thru nausea and the sniffles. in the hopes of making him feel better, i offered to make him some soup. he ix-nayed wonton soup (which is my grandmother's recipe and it is awesome!), chicken soup and chicken 'n dumplings. he likes his beef stew. so i rifled thru my one-pot cookbook for the ultimate recipe that would satisfy his palate but also mine. i'm a pretty easy eater, and i've been asked how i deal with jab's picky food nature. i see it as more of a challenge to work around. plus, when i first met him, he did not eat ethnic food. as in, no chicken penang, or vindaloo, or curry, and i think he tried Pho for the first time this year! it's no hardship for me to figure out what he'll enjoy. i've stopped beating my head against his dislikes and i just work my cooking around it. it all evens out in the end!
Beef in Beer with Herb Dumplings
from Linda Doeser's One Pot Recipes
2 tbl corn oil
2 large onions, thinly sliced
8 carrots, sliced
4 tbl all-purpose flour
salt and pepper
2 lb 12 oz/1.25 kg stewing steak, cut into cubes
scant 2 cups stout
2 tsp brown sugar
2 bay leaves
1 tbl chopped fresh thyme
3/4 cup self-rising flour
pinch of salt
1/2 cup shredded shortening
2 tbl chopped fresh parsley, plus extra to garnish
about 4 tbl water
Preheat the oven to 325F/160C. Heat the oil in an ovenproof casserole. Add the onions and carrots and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, for five minutes, or until the onions are softened. Meanwhile, place the flour in a plastic bag and season. Add the steak to the bag, tie the top, and shake well to coat. Do this in batches, if necessary.
Remove the veggies from the casserole with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add the steak to the casserole, in batches and cook, stirring frequently, until browned all over. Return the meat, onions and carrots to the casserole and sprinkle in any remaining seasoned flour. Pour in the stout and add the sugar, bay leaves and thyme. Bring to a boil, cover and bake in the preheated over for 1 3/4 hours.
To make the Herb Dumplings, sift the flour and salt into a bowl. Stir in the shortening and parsley, then add enough water to make a dough. Shapre into small balls. Add to the casserole and return to the oven for 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaves. Serve, sprinkled with parsley.
Today's Soundtrack: Alice in Chains, Heaven Beside You