When in doubt, make soup!

Beef and Cabbage Stew 15

My parents are down in Florida and I’m looking after the house while they’re gone. This entailed cleaning out the fridge after they left, and so I arrived home with this oddment of groceries: 1 small zucchini, 4 wilted green onions, 2 baby bok choi, 9 multicoloured carrots, half a large sweet onion, half a large rutabaga, and half a large Savoy cabbage.

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Welp, that looks like a soup to me. Fortunately I had some stewing beef in the freezer which I chucked in the sink to defrost. Then I got to chopping.

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I also chopped up 1 head of garlic, and sautéed it with the onions in a large stockpot with a drop of olive oil until they were soft and sweet.

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Remember when cutting up rutabagas to be very careful. Slice off the top and bottom first so you have a flat surface to work on before you go after the skin, as it will be tough, especially if it’s been waxed.

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I added all the other chopped veg to the pot. I only scrubbed the carrots, didn’t peel them. All that vitamin-y goodness is in the skin and these are such tender carrots it seemed like a waste to remove the skin.

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Make sure to dry your beef before you brown it. It will make browning way quicker.

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I also like to dredge it in flour for a nice crust, and the flour will help thicken the stew as it cooks. You can use rice flour for a gluten-free option.

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Brown the meat until it has a nice seared edge all the way around.

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Then you can chuck that in the pot, too. I added about 8 cups water and two mini cups of concentrated beef bouillon, but go with whatever floats your boat.

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Give it a stir and set it to simmer for about 30-45 minutes, until the rutabagas are soft when you smush them with a spoon.

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I added in a pinch of ground nutmeg and cloves, as well as a few teaspoons of dried oregano. Add salt and pepper as well, if you like.

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To combat the bitterness of the cabbage I also added in a few tablespoons each of maple syrup and rice vinegar (it sounds weird, I know, but it works). You can also use cider vinegar.

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My scrumptious savoury stew!

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I shoved it into large freezer bags that I froze flat for easy storage. I can’t wait to haul one of these babies out in the dead of winter for some comfort food!

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Author: allythebell

A corgi. A small boy. A sense of adventure. Chaos ensues.

11 thoughts on “When in doubt, make soup!”

  1. I love the little tips and tricks you have, like coating the meat in flour and adding rice vinegar to combat bitterness. Where did you learn these little tips? Any cookbooks that have them, or just experience?

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    1. Thanks! I think most of the weird things I learn come from the multitudinous mistakes I make, and my willingness to experiment (see: mistakes). That’s definitely where the vinegar thing came from. I love vinegar and I will put it in everything if I can. In doing so, I figured out that it has different effects on different things … SCIENCE!

      Other things I guess I picked up in passing from my mother or Martha Stewart or Cooks Illustrated (Cooks Illustrated is a great source for cooking tips and techniques) or other little things like that. If you’re interested in learning more of those neat things, I recommend this book, which I received as a gift a few years ago and it’s amazing:

      http://www.amazon.ca/Food-Cooking-Science-Lore-Kitchen-ebook/dp/B000PAAH1W/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1416342232&sr=8-1&keywords=food+and+cooking+the+science+and+lore

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