Monday, February 18, 2008

Beef Stew with root vegetables

I have beef stew bubbling away in the crock pot, smelling mouthwateringly delicious, full of the great Full Belly root vegetables that have been wasting away in my crisper drawer for the past few weeks and tasty Chileno beef. I'll post a picture this evening, but here's the recipe in the meantime.

Beef Stew with Root Vegetables

2 lb. stew beef, trimmed of all visible fat and cut into bite sized pieces (I used short ribs cut from the bone, and added the bones for extra flavor. I'll pull the bones out before serving.)
2 T flour (I used whole wheat from Full Belly Farm)
1/2 t. salt
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
2-3 T Canola oil
1 large yellow onion
1 clove garlic
3 or 4 medium carrots, cut into bite sized chunks (about 3/4")
1 celery root, peeled and cut into bite sized chunks (about 3/4"), or 2-3 stalks of celery, diced
2 or 3 medium potatoes, cut into bite sized chunks (about 3/4")
1 rutabaga, peeled and cut into bite sized chunks (about 3/4")
6 oz. can tomato paste
2-3 c. water or 1/2 beef stock, 1/2 water (I didn't have any stock, but added the bones for flavor)
3-4 cups dry red wine
1 T. Worcestershire sauce
1/8 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp. salt
1 bay leaf
1/8 tsp. cayenne
1/8 tsp. marjoram
1 t. thyme
sliced mushrooms
1 cup frozen peas, thawed

Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a large bowl, then toss well with the beef. Heat the oil in a large, heavy bottomed pan (NOT non-stick) and brown the meat in batches. Move the meat to the crockpot.

Add the onions to the pan and cook until translucent but not brown, then move it to the crockpot. Deglaze the pan with 2 c. red wine, scraping up any brown bits; reduce by half, then add the tomato paste, seasonings, and 1 c. water. Stir to combine, bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer while you prepare the veggies except for mushrooms and peas. Add the veggies to the crockpot and cover with the pan sauce. Add equal parts wine and water to cover the veggies.

Set the crockpot to low for 6-8 hours, or until the meat is very tender. Add mushrooms and peas for the last 15 minutes of cooking.

Sunday, February 17, 2008

Polenta rounds with tomato sauce

I made a seriously delicious, easy, and toddler friendly meal today and wanted to share. Last night, I steamed broccoli and carrots, sauteed bell pepper, onion, and garlic, minced it all very fine and added it to cooked polenta (yellow cornmeal). I spread the mixture out on an oiled 9"x13" pan and put it in the fridge overnight to set. At dinner tonight, I cut the polenta into rounds with a biscuit cutter and pan fried them in olive oil, served them with tomato sauce, and enjoyed a healthy, whole food dinner with Jax, who loves them (he loves anything he can dip.) I have a plate full of polenta rounds to pop in the freezer for when I don't feel like cooking.

I served the polenta rounds with kale and cottage cheese. Yes, I've eaten a real meal! Hopefully it's part of a trend away from the bland carbs that have kept the nausea at bay for these past few months. :)

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Hooray for Hot Cereal

I prepared a big batch of hot cereal this morning to be reheated for breakfast the rest of the week. It is my standard oatmeal recipe made with milk and applesauce, cinnamon and vanilla, but I added raisins and a touch of maple syrup. I drizzle it with 1 t. flaxseed oil when I serve it, since flaxseed oil shouldn't be cooked. Delicious, filling, very healthy, and comforting on an upset stomach - it's a winner! I'm glad that I have a few portions now packaged in the fridge for mornings when I can't stand to stand at the stove for 30 minutes stirring. I used the grains from my grain CSA (they're stacking up since I haven't cooked much lately!), home made applesauce, Organic Valley milk from Modesto, and California grown organic Thompson raisins. Yum!

Monday, February 4, 2008

Sick again

I haven't posted in a while, mostly because the nausea hasn't let up and I have no interesting recipes to share for the very plain foods that I'm preparing - toast, crackers, noodles, canned pears, yogurt. I lost 6 lb. during my first trimester, but it's almost certainly just because food isn't at all appealing and little is staying down. I'm very nearly to the second trimester, and am now on anti-nausea medication, so I should be eating like a normal person in the near future.

I'm also sick again with bronchitis, an ear infection and eye infection. Jax picked it back up last week and is almost better; I'm on antibiotics and waiting for wellness to invite me back to the party!

So I'm sorry that there's no new information here. I hope to be back to regular blogging (and off the sofa surrounded by spent tissues) very soon.