Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Can a Sandwich Influence a Stew?

Good evening everyone!  It's becoming apparent to me that I have a problem...a soup/stew problem.  Every recipe I find, I tend to gravitate towards the warm, brothy-ness of a soup.  In fact, I have three (including today's) recipes lined up that are some variation of a soup or stew.  When the temperatures are only the 20's-30's, can you blame me?  Tonight, I'm creating a very unique stew, that has influences from a very famous sandwich from Philadelphia.

The Recipe:  Philly Cheesesteak Stew
Adapted from a Recipe Found On:  www.pinterest.com

What You'll Need:
1 1/2 Pounds Beef Sirloin, very thinly sliced
1/4 Teaspoon Onion Powder
4 Tablespoons All-Purpose Flour, divided
2 Onions, quartered and thinly sliced
10 Ounces White Mushrooms, sliced
1/2 Teaspoon dried Thyme
2 Cloves Garlic, pressed through a garlic press
4 Cups Beef Stock
2-4 Slices Provolone Cheese

Before you begin anything, pour the beef broth in a large pot and set over medium-low heat, so that it's hot when you are ready to use it.  Meanwhile, in a large mixing bowl, add the beef sirloin, onion powder, and a couple of pinches of salt and black pepper and toss to coat evenly.  Sprinkle two tablespoons of flour over the meat and toss to coat again.  Set this mixture aside.

Next, place a large, nonstick skillet over medium-high heat and add three to four tablespoons of olive oil in.  Once heated, add half of the sirloin in and cook for a minute or two and flip the pieces over to cook on the other side, continuing to cook for a minute or two.  Remove the pieces of meat to a clean plate and add the repeat with the remaining sirloin. 

After the beef has cooked and been removed from the skillet, add a tablespoon of oil into the pan and add the sliced onions, along with a pinch of salt and pepper.  Cook for six minutes, until the onions have started to caramelize, but not burn.  Once the onions have cooked and started to soften, add the mushrooms and allow them to saute with the onions, cooking for six minutes, stirring frequently.

Next, add the dried thyme and garlic into the skillet and stir to incorporate.  Once the garlic becomes fragrant, sprinkle the remaining two tablespoons of flour over the onion/mushroom mixture and stir to combine and blend well.  Once thoroughly mixed, slowly add the hot beef stock to the skillet and stir as to not have any flour clumps forming.

Turn the heat down on the skillet to medium-low, add the cooked sirloin pieces, and let the stew simmer for 10 minutes, uncovered, so all the flavors can infused and it can begin to tighten up.  Season with salt and pepper.  

Preheat an oven to broil on high.  Prepare a small baking sheet with aluminum foil and place some crocks on top.  Ladle the stew evenly in the crocks and top with a slice of provolone cheese.  Place the baking sheet under the broiler and cook for a minute or two, just so the cheese has just began to melt.  Serve and enjoy!

The End Result:

The incorporation of the onions, mushrooms, and beef in the recipe almost reminds me of a french onion soup, but obviously with a little more meat.  It's full of flavor and letting the stew the simmer with all the ingredients makes that happen.  The original recipe had the soup in sourdough bowls and letting the cheese melt on top of that.  While that is a very delicious idea, I had been itching for months to use the crocks Tyler got me for my birthday, and they were a great vessel to use the soup in.  If you want to try a new hearty stew, this is the recipe for you!

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