The Greek version of a classic beef stew with a lot of lemony flavor. A classic wintry dish that's full of comfort-ness!
This delicious meat stew is slow-cooked on the stovetop. Along with potatoes, carrots, celery, and leek. Flavored with lemon, a little bit turmeric, and mustard seeds (but that's optional).
Why It's Healthy
It contains various vegetables such as potatoes, carrots, celery, leeks, onions, garlic. Plus plenty of lemon. Lemon is one of the best natural antiviral, antimicrobial, and antibiotic foods. It also helps with the absorption of protein by our bodies because it contains Vitamin C. Another healthy ingredient in this stew is turmeric powder which has antiviral and antibacterial properties. And if you want even more add that optional teaspoon of mustard seeds. All these make it a great wintry stew for cold.
Want more health benefits? Add that optional teaspoon of mustard seeds. Mustard seeds will give a slight mustardy flavor to the stew without covering the lemon flavor. Mustard seeds are highly anti-inflammatory and antioxidant.
Tips To Make The Best Beef Stew
- Sear the meat properly. This ensures the meat locks it's juices inside and keeps its texture throughout the cooking. To do this, make sure the meat is free of aditional moisture. Tap dry with paper towels for best results. Then sear on really hot olive oil. Don't overcrowd the meat in the pot while searing otherwise the temperature will drop and the meat will start to simmer. Also, don't flip the meat too soon leave at least 3-4 minutes from the moment you added the meat to the pot. To ensure it creates a proper brown crust.
- Caramelize those onions first. Onion add a nice glazy shiny look to the sauce as well as a natural sweetness. To enhance this and get the most out of the onions, cook them over medium-low heat for a few minutes so they get nice and soft.
- Simmer covered on low heat. To make a good old-fashioned stew with real tender beef chunks in it, you need to give it time. Add plenty of water in to cover the ingredients in the pot, put the lid on the pot and turn the heat to low. And simmer this way until the meat feels tender when pricking it with a knife. With meat stews there is no hard and fast rule on how long you should cook the meat. Each meat part is different and comes from a different fed and aged animal. So always test the meat when stewing. You can always add some hot water in it if needed. Or if there is too much water you can always turn the heat to high and cook without the lid until water evaporates.
- The best sauce is not the one thickened with flour. In many recipes a glazy sauce results by adding flour or cornstarch to thicken it. The most flavorful sauce though is the one that comes from the reduction of the sauce. You get less quantity but so much more flavor this way. So let that sauce reduce down until it gets thickened on it's own. Unless you prefer a more soupy-like stew. That's up to you.
Other Traditional Greek Beef Stews:
- Stifado - Traditional Greek Beef Stew With Shallots, Red Wine, & Spices
- Mosharaki Kokkinisto - Beef Stew In Spiced Tomato Sauce
- Stovetop Pot Roast Beef Stew With Lemon Gravy
Healthy Beef Stew With Potatoes (Gluten-Free)
- olive oil
- 1 kilogram/ 2.2 pound beef stew meat (like chuck)
- 1 large red onion minced
- 4 large garlic cloves sliced
- 1 small stick of leek minced
- OPTIONAL: 1 teaspoon mustard seeds
- 2 medium-sized lemons juiced
- 1 lemon zested
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 teaspoons dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried marjoram (or 1 teaspoon dried oregano instead)
- a splash white wine
- 500 ml vegetable or beef stock
- 2 large carrots cut into bite-sized pieces
- 2 sticks celery chopped
- 5-6 medium-sized potatoes peeled and cut into wedges
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- Heat a generous splash of olive oil in a large cooking pot over high heat.
- Add the meat and sear on all sides until it gets a deep brown color. Let the meat cook for 3-4 minutes on each side before flipping to ensure it creates a nice crust.
- Remove the meat from the pot and transfer it to a plate or dish and set aside.
- In the same pot add another splash of olive oil and drop the heat to medium-low. Add the onion, leeks, garlic, and mustard seeds and cook until softened.
- Pour in the lemon juice and lemon zest. With a wooden spoon scrape the bottom of the pot from the brown bits.
- Add meat back to the pot. Add also the bay leaves, thyme, and marjoram. Pour that splash of wine in as well.
- Cook for 2-3 minutes for the wine to evaporate completely. Add the carrots and celery. Season with salt and pepper.
- Pour in the stock and enough hot water to cover the meat completely. Wait until it starts to boil. Then drop the heat to low and simmer covered for about 1 hour to 1 hour and a half. Prick the meat with a knife to see if it's tender. If not simmer a bit more. Adding a splash of hot water if needed. Once the meat is tender proceed on adding the potatoes.
- Add the potatoes and turmeric to the pot. Put the lid back on and simmer until potatoes get cooked as well. Takes about 30 minutes. If there is too much water in the pot then uncover the pot and raise the heat to medium-high. And cook like this until the sauce thickens.
- Serve with plenty of fresh ground pepper on top!
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