Semi-Organic Beef Vegetable Soup

  • 1 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 C sweet onion, diced
  • 2 large carrots,peeled and diced
  • 2 stalks celery, diced
  • 2 small Yukon Gold potatoes, diced, skin on
  • 1 medium green squash, diced
  • 1 to 1 1/4 pound top blade roast
  • 1/2 cup canned diced tomatoes with juice
  • 4 large white button mushrooms, thick dice
  • 1/2 C frozen corn
  • garlic powder, to taste
  • pinch dried parsley
  • pinch dried thyme
  • 1 quart organic beef broth
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Makes about four healthy servings.

  1. In a small stockpot heat olive oil until hot.  Salt and pepper the roast.  Brown the beef on both sides over medium high heat.
  2. Add the celery and onion.  Reduce heat to medium and saute for several minutes.
  3. Add garlic powder and thyme.  Add enough broth to almost but not completely cover the roast.  Bring to a boil, then cover and reduce to a simmer.
  4. Simmer slowly for two hours.
  5. After two hours, remove the roast to a cutting board and allow to cool.
  6. Add the rest of the beef broth and tomatoes to the pot.
  7. Add the potatoes and carrots. Simmer for 30 minutes.
  8. After 30 minutes add the squash , mushrooms and corn.  Simmer for another 30 minutes.
  9. When the roast is cooled, trim any excess fat, cube and add to the soup.
  10.  Adjust your seasonings.  Add parsley.

My meals since Friday evening have been soup, cereal, soup, soup, toast/banana, soup, and soup.   The jeans are getting a little loose.  I cannot remember a weekend of such healthy eating ever.  Yes, The Boss is still sick.  Friday I made chicken soup.  Last night I made Vegetarian Vegetable Soup.  Today I decided upon Beef Vegetable for a change in pace.

A high quality beef vegetable soup is the end result of the right cut of beef and some high quality broth.  This recipe is semi-organic because most of the ingredients were organic but some were not.  The beef broth was hand selected store bought prepared organic broth.  I used top blade which IMO makes a big difference  due to the cut and marbling.

Tips

I remembered the mushrooms.   Use vegetables you have on hand.  I also decided to leave out peas because peas are not one of my favorite vegetables.  The corn adds a touch of sweetness.  Note the roast is braised whole for several hours, cooled, cubed and returned to the soup.  The beef stays tender this way.  You won’t end up with tiny hockey pucks.

A salad on the side and crusty bread would make this a meal.

So would a three pound top blade roast.  But with that much beef you might as well make Pot Roast.

Tri-Tip Beef Stew

My memories of beef stew growing up was that it came out of a can and tasted pretty bad.  My mother was not a very good cook.  She was however very good at opening cans.  Consequently, I never really cared much for beef stew.

This weekend we had friends over for dinner.  At first, we were thinking pizza.  No, we just did that a couple of weeks ago with this crew.  So I decided to cook but wanted to keep it simple.  I also wanted to clean out the freezer a bit since winter is coming and there might be some stuff in there that needs to get cooked.  I went rummaging.  I found tri-tip steaks.

“Am I going to grill these things before next summer?”

Probably not.  Stew.  Problem solved.

Tri-Tip Tips:

This cut makes a wonderful stew.  The packages of stew meat you find in the store consist of cubes from different cuts.  Some are very lean which makes for a healthier dish, but less flavor.  A good tri-tip is well marbled and the extra fat makes this stew quite tasty.  You’ll note no potatoes in this stew.  I served the stew over plain rice.  Add potatoes if you wish.  We had homemade cornbread and salad on the side.  A crusty bread works too.  Readers with a keen eye will notice this recipe is similar to Mike’s Pot Roast.  You caught me.

Update 01.07.17

As much as I love making this stew I have a confession to make.  I’ve been making beef stew with top blade steak.  I’m not going to change the name of this stew.  But I should.  Good tri-tip has been hard to find at the stores but one store always seems to have top blade steaks in their meat case.  Well marbled too.

If you decide to use top blade keep the steaks whole and brown on both sides.  The rest of the instructions are the same.  Prior to serving pull the steaks apart with two forks into bite sized chunks.  This particular cut will make the most tender beef stew you ever had.

A lot better than canned too.

Tri-Tip Beef Stew

Ingredients

  • 1.5 to 2 lbs boneless tri-tip roast,  well marbled, cut into one inch cubes
  • 2 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 T butter (optional)
  • 1/2 large yellow onion, diced
  • 3 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 stalk celery, small dice
  • 1 carrot, peeled, small dice
  • 3-4 carrots, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • 1/2 lb white mushrooms, rinsed and quartered
  • 1/2 lb frozen organic green peas
  • 1/2 C Sweet Marsala wine
  • BIG Pinch dried thyme
  • 2-3 T tomato paste with basil
  • 1 C low sodium beef broth
  • Salt and pepper

Method

  1. In a cast iron enamel covered pot heat 2 T of oil on medium high heat. Brown beef cubes in pot, several minutes on each side.  You might need to do this in batches to allow a good browning of the meat.
  2. When beef is browned add the onions, small dice carrot, and celery to the pot and cook for about 5 to 10 minutes.  Add the garlic, mushrooms and a pinch of thyme, and saute for another minute.  Add the Marsala wine and continue to saute until the alcohol evaporates.   Add tomato paste, beef broth and mix thoroughly.
  3. Cover and adjust the heat down to a low simmer.
  4. Cook for 2 hours, or longer.
  5. Approximately 45 minutes before serving add 1 T butter (optional) and the remaining carrot chunks.  Reduce heat back to low.
  6. Around 10 minutes before serving, add 1/2 pound frozen organic green peas.
  7. Simmer on low heat until peas are heated through.
  8. Adjust for seasoning, salt and pepper to taste.

Confused by Beef

http://www.amazingribs.com/recipes/beef/zen_of_beef_cuts.html

Confused by beef?  Don’t feel bad.  I get confused constantly in the meat aisle.  For example, I came across a Top Blade Roast this past week and immediately got confused.  Top Blade Roast?  Not a clue what it was.  But the roast was on sale so I bought it.  Now what do I do with it?  After some determined internet research I learned Top Blade is Chuck.

Pot roast.

During the course of my research I stumbled upon a great website run by a guy named Meathead.

Yes, Meathead.

Check it out and learn what a Denver Steak is.