17 March 2012

Lá Fhéile Pádraig Sona Daoibh!

I had plans to finally do a proper blog post today...until my daughter took a tumble and not only dislocated her ankle but broke it as well! And she tried to pass it off as a sprain. (smacking forehead)

What is it they say about nurses and doctors making the worst patients? Sheesh. "It's just a flesh wound, I'll be okay! Let me just drag myself up the stairs to my apartment and stick a package of frozen peas on it. No, don't tell Mom, she'll freak!"

So no partying for us! Just a quiet night at home with a pot of Beef 'n' Guinness Stew, a pint of Smithwick's, and watching The Quiet Man with a kid in a cast on the couch. :) Oh, and her boyfriend, who has stuck by her side through the whole ordeal of emergency rooms, surgery, bad reactions to a medication, another trip to the ER...

Yeah, it was that kind of day. :) But all is well and I am grateful.

My recipe is roughly:

About a pound of stew beef cut into bite size cubes
About a half cup apple cider
1 bottle Guinness stout
2 Tb tomato paste or puree (ketchup is fine)
Half a large onion, diced small
1 or 2 cloves garlic, mashed
Beef broth OR water with beef bouillion cubes OR just water
Cup of baby carrots
2 medium parsnips, chopped
4 to 8 red potatoes, depending on the size and how many you like. Peel and quarter, or just leave the peels on.

"Sweat" the onions and garlic over medium low heat in a little olive oil until soft. Meanwhile, pat the cubed meat dry with paper towels. Heat a little olive oil over medium heat in a heavy skillet. Brown the meat a few cubes at a time just until it is nicely browned but not cooked through. Transfer meat to pot with onions/garlic as they get browned.

Deglaze skillet with some of the Guinness, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom. Add to pot with meat and onions. Add apple cider and the rest of the Guinness and bring to slow simmer and stir in tomato paste. Let it work while you chop the rest of the veggies. Add them to the pot and add more water or beef broth to cover. Taste and add some salt or beef bouillion cubes if needed (remember it'll cook down so go easy on the salt). Cover and simmer slowly several hours. Taste again before serving to adjust seasonings, if needed. Add some black pepper to taste. Serve with hot buttered rolls.

Have a great day! Be safe, use a designated driver! :)

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