My beef stew recipe doesn't call for any thickener (cornstarch, tapioca or even browning the beef beforehand).
Actually I have the opposite "problem." I need to make a gravy (I make the packet AuJus) to add to it to make it more like stew (this is really really hearty). It does have tomato paste in it so that could be what helps it stay thick. (I got this from the Penzey's spice catalog years ago.) It's ridiculously simple but so very very good. I cook it in a covered stoneware dish in the oven but I imagine it would work in slow cooker too.
1 1/2 pounds stew meet, cubed 6 cups peeled cubed potatoes (about 4 large or small red potatoes unpeeled) 12 small whole pearl onions or 2 medium onions cut into chunks 4 cups carrots cut into 3” rounds (5-6 medium carrots) 2 cups celery cut into chunks (2 large stalks) 1 (15 ounce) can petite diced tomatoes or 2 (8 ounce) cans tomato sauce 1-2 teaspoons salt 1/2 – 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper 1-2 teaspoons Oregano 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
Cover and bake at 250 for 4 - 5 hours.
Fitness Minutes: (47,828)
1,466 12/20/10 9:36 P
What I do is coat my beef before putting it in the crockpot with a little flour. That will thicken it, and if the stew isn't think enough before it's done, I mix some cornstarch and water and then pour into the stew. Beef stew in the crockpot is my favorite!!
I always do mine the old fashioned way with a flour rue. It may be more calories but there is nothing like it for comfort food! Plus I do tend to put barley in mine stew anyways so that helps with nutrition... cornstarch works to thicken as well!
I prefer to add barley to thicken stew, works well and adds a grain-a good source of fiber.
Fitness Minutes: (93,515)
12/17/10 8:15 A
yes, its just to create a nice rich texture without too many calories.
12/17/10 7:36 A
I am sure its for a thickener. I always use 1 Tablespoon of corn starch or use tomato paste rather than sauce.
Fitness Minutes: (90)
16 12/17/10 6:56 A
so, i'm looking at crock pot recipes for beef stew and i'm just curious some call for clear jel or instant tapioca and some do not, what is the purpose of this? does it just make the sauce part thicker??? Thanks!
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