October 9, 2011

Spiced Beef Stew with Carrots and Mint

Spiced Beef Stew with Carrots and Mint

In my meat-eating days of yore, I remember making a beef stew that was absolutely delicious. It was sort of a throw-together meal: leftover cubed steak, potatoes, onions, carrots, broth, and some various herbs. But what I remember most is the wonderful, warming, homey feeling I got while eating it. It was perfect. So of course, I had to re-create that, vegan style.



This is, however, no traditional "beef" stew. It's easy to make, but it's spiced in such a way that makes you think of Moroccan or Mediterranean cuisine: pungent, smoky, warm, aromatic, and exotic. It's a little spicy, and there's a hint of sweetness from both the carrots and cinnamon.

Spiced Beef Stew with Carrots and Mint

Although the original recipe calls for pumpkin pie spice, I just adapted my own using a blend of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice (because really, that's all it is). About 2-3 shallots (depending on the size) will yield enough for lots of pungent flavor, and for the sake of ease, I used a bag of petite-cut baby carrots. The flour will help to perfectly thicken the stew, and the broth will darken and develop a richer color as it cooks. The mint isn't too noticeable (at least the amount added in the stew), but the fresh chopped leaves on top add a nice freshness that contrasts the warm spices.

Spiced Beef Stew with Carrots and Mint

As with most stews, this definitely gets better the longer it sits, so next-day leftovers are sure to pack extra flavor. It's important to get a good crispy sear on the "beef" before adding it to the stew, as you don't want it to get soggy. I served mine on top of couscous, but it would be good on its own too.



Spiced Beef Stew with Carrots and Mint
(adapted from Bon Appetit, March 2007)

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 12 ounces vegan beef cubes (such as Gardein Beefless Tips)
  • 1 cup sliced shallots (about 2-3 large)
  • 8 ounces petite-cut baby carrots
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/8 teaspoon allspice
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 2 1/2 cups vegetable broth
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1/3 cup chopped fresh mint, divided
Heat 1 tablespoon oil in large nonstick skillet over high heat. Add beef to skillet and sauté until crispy on all sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer beef to bowl. Add remaining 1 tablespoon oil to skillet. Add shallots and carrots and sauté until golden, about 3 minutes. Add all spices; stir 30 seconds. Sprinkle flour over; stir 30 seconds. Stir in broth and bring to boil. Reduce heat to medium; simmer until carrots are just tender, about 8 minutes. Return beef to skillet; cook until sauce thickens slightly, about 1 minute. Season stew to taste with salt and pepper. Stir in 1/4 cup chopped mint. Serve with remaining chopped mint. Serves 4.

5 comments :

  1. Such a flavorful dish! Baby carrots are the tastiest too. This is something you can't say no to. The easy preparation and cooking instructions add to its appeal. This is a must try recipe!

    ReplyDelete
  2. It looks great. I'm still so hesitant to try the "fake" meats. I still make beef stew for my husband all the time though and I certainly like your seasoning ideas.

    ReplyDelete
  3. The beef stew looks amazingly delicious. The last photo got me salivating, can't believe you finished the dish without me :)

    ReplyDelete
  4. The beef stew tastes even better with the mint. It makes the dish more spicy.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Sounds fantastic. Thanks for sharing.

    Simon

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...