Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Irish stew

Irish stew on Flickr by beFOODled.

The morning of our Irish Gastronati, I got up early to make this recipe, which was given to me by my Irish friend at work. I was super-organized and the stew was bubbling away by noon, but then S and I stepped out for an impromptu shopping trip that lasted the whole afternoon. When I came back, the stew had almost dried up and there were pieces of potato stuck on the bottom of the pot. Thankfully all was not lost. I revived it with two full cans of Guinness (thank goodness!) and added fresh carrots and potatoes. The meat completely fell apart as you can see in the photo, but taste-wise it was still delicious and Guinnessy.

Irish stew
(serves six, plus leftovers)

3 pounds of stewing beef cubes
4 slices of bacon, cut into thin strips
5 potatoes, cut into thick slices
3 carrots, chopped on the diagonal
3 onions, thickly sliced
2 cups of stock
2 cans of Guinness
fresh thyme

Fry the bacon in the bottom of a stock pot until crispy. Remove the cooked bacon from the stock pot and set it aside. Pour out most of the bacon fat, leaving about a teaspoon, and add some olive oil. To the same pot, add half of the bacon, potatoes, carrots and onions, and then the meat. Season with salt and pepper. Cover the meat with the remaining vegetables and bacon.

Add the stock and thyme and bring to a boil. Cook for four to six hours at the barest simmer until the meat pulls apart if you want to do it as I did, or simmer for one hour until tender, which is what the recipe recommends ;) Add two cans of Guinness and cook for another hour.

Serve hot with cheese scones and tea biscuits.


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