Serves 6

Make this stew in a large, heavy-bottomed stove-to-oven soup pot, such as a cast iron Dutch oven or an enameled pot. Try to use a chuck roast, cut into cubes, for a melt-in-your-mouth, flavorful beef. If you start with a 3-pound piece, you might end up with about 2 1/2 pounds after the fat is cut out. Although it creates an extra step, I cook the vegetables on the side to get the best texture and then add them to the stew.

  • 3 pounds beef chuck, cut into 1 1 /2-inch cubes, fat discarded
  • Salt and pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 tablespoons flour
  • 1 cup red wine
  • 3 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 4 cups chicken stock
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves or 1 tablespoon fresh thyme
  • 6 medium red potatoes, peeled and quartered or cut into chunks for roasting
  • 2 cups green beans, cut in half or thirds
  • 4 large carrots, peeled and sliced on a diagonal
  • 1/4 cup minced fresh parsley leaves

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Sprinkle beef with salt and pepper. In a large soup pot, heat 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Brown beef on all sides in two batches. Set aside.

2. Add onions and sauté about 4 to 5 minutes. Add garlic and sauté another minute or so. Stir in flour and cook 1 to 2 minutes, stirring often. Add wine and tomato paste, scraping up any browned bits that may have stuck to the pot. Add stock, bay leaf, Worcestershire sauce, and thyme; bring to simmer. Add meat, then return to simmer, cover, and cook for about 1 1/2 hours, until beef is fork-tender.

3. While stew is cooking, mix potatoes with remaining 1 tablespoon of oil and salt to taste, and roast in a 350 degrees oven until tender, about 40 minutes. Steam green beans for 4 minutes. Drain and run under cold water to stop the cooking. Steam carrots for 2 to 3 minutes and run under cold water.

4. Just before serving, add potatoes to stew and reheat gently. Stir in green beans, carrots, and parsley. Season with additional salt and pepper, if needed.

This recipe was originally published in the story, Soup: The Ultimate Comfort Food.