This beef stew recipe belongs mostly to my dear colleague and fellow personal chef Elissa. I’ve created a few variations just for the sake of playing with different flavors – I like to add some tomato, so I included that here as an option. This stew is a one stop shop for a meal, but plan ahead as it needs 2 – 3 hours to cook. You can use a pressure cooker instead for quicker cooking, see the note below the recipe!
I am excited to also bring you some health tips for this holiday season, courtesy of the lovely dietitian nutritionist Ayla Withee from Boston Functional Nutrition. You can find fantastic information on her website to go along with these tips:
Make yourself the priority. Remind yourself why you’re eating the way you are – for great health, to reduce unwanted symptoms, etc. – and how important it is to your wellbeing.
Keep stress at a minimum. Stress will always make negative symptoms and eating habits worse. Reduce stress by exercising, taking a walk or trying meditation or yoga. Or, if all you have time to do is close your eyes and take some deep breaths, make sure you at least do that.
Stay regular with other meals. Eat normal, healthy and balanced meals and snacks surrounding other holiday events. This will help keep you eating better and on a schedule.
Drink plenty of fluids and mostly water. Thirst can sometimes be mistaken for hunger and during busy times, drinking can be forgotten.
And a few additional tips I try to remind myself of at this time of year:
- Incorporate bone broth into your weekly meals to support gut health (so make this beef stew!).
- Focus on anti-inflammatory ingredients such as ginger, turmeric, and omega-3’s (like wild caught salmon).
- Don’t skimp on sleep – if you have to choose between that 5am spin class or catching up on much needed sleep, it’s best to choose sleep. You’re not doing yourself any favors by depriving your body of recovery time.
- Break up with sugar - or keep it to a minimum as much as you can outside those holiday parties.
- 1 Tbl grass-fed ghee or coconut oil
- 3 lb. grass-fed beef stew meat
- 1 large onion, chopped into 1- inch pieces
- ½ cup celery root, peeled and cut into 1- inch cubes
- 3 carrots, peeled, cut into 1-inch rounds
- 3 medium parsnips, peeled, cut into 1-inch rounds
- ½ cup sweet potato, peeled and cut into ½-inch pieces
- 5 cloves of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 T. minced fresh parsley
- 1 T. minced fresh rosemary
- 2 t. fresh thyme, minced
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 T. balsamic vinegar
- 2 Tbl tomato paste (optional)
- ¾ tsp salt
- ½ tsp black pepper
- 2½ cups beef stock
- 2 large handfuls baby spinach (optional)
- Over medium high heat, melt the ghee/oil in a dutch oven pot (cast iron enabled pots are best for braising)
- When the pot is hot, sear half the beef until browned, about 3-5 minutes on top and bottom.
- Add the remaining beef and the remaining ingredients except spinach.
- Stir, cover and bring to a low boil.
- Reduce heat to low to maintain a gentle simmer and cook until the meat is very tender, about 2½ -3 hours.
- Meat is done when a wooden skewer or toothpick inserted into the thickest part comes out with little or no resistance. Be sure to keep lid on pot during cooking.
- Add spinach and gently stir in just before serving.
Alternatively you can use a pressure cooker:
Lock lid on pot and bring to high pressure (setting 2). Reduce heat to maintain even pressure for 24 minutes. Remove from heat and let rest for 10 minutes. Release steam and then remove lid when pressure indicator has dropped.