Spicy ((no peek)) Mexican-Style Beef Stew
I am sure I sound like a broken record, but just to give you a status update: Life is still crazy busy! Here is a little story to prove the crazy part at least:
Gracie was in the middle of a homeschool lesson, gymnastics lessons were soon to follow & I had several pressing things happening with the boys and the garden. Although it was only 9:00 am, I knew this would be my only window to make dinner, so I began gathering the ingredients & chopping.
I had assembled the entire stew and was seconds away from taking the last photo before I covered it & stuck it in the oven, when my phone rang. It was my BF ((Laura)). We caught up on the business of the day and then moved on to dinner plans.
She had something important to tell me about an upcoming project we are working on, when I rudely interrupted her.
“Oh no! — Shoot!!” I exclaimed. I am sure she thought I had injured myself based on my startling tone.
“What is it?” she is such a good friend, I could hear her concern.
“I made dinner & I didn’t have to — ugh, I just finished making dinner and no one will be home tonight! The whole herd is going to opening night at the ball field & I was supposed to be getting a night off of dinner duty!”
“Oh well!” she quickly said, “Now you have dinner for tomorrow!”
“Yes! I am finally ahead for the first time in months, now I feel better!”
I simply covered the dutch oven and stuck it in the fridge. That extra 24 hours gave the giant chunks of frozen roast time to thaw and absorb the flavors of the surrounding juices.
The finished product was so flavorful & tender, if only every mistake I ever made turned out like this…
I served this stew over some Trader Joe’s purple rice. The rice was a nice addition, soaking up some of that yummy broth & adding an earthy, nuttiness to the flavors of the stew.
Not included in the photo of ingredients is about a teaspoon of chili powder. According to my herd, this meal was so spicy and hot. David texted me during dinner to report it was “freaking hot”. Yes, he texted me while I sat across from him, we are a “modern stone-age family” I suppose.
I did not think it was too hot and was really surprised that everyone was complaining. I even used MILD canned tomatoes & green chilies ((see)).
If you are concerned about the heat index of this meal, replace the salsa verde with 2 cans of mild chopped green chilies and 2 to 3 cups of chicken stock.
Oh, and you may be wondering about the Ponzu. The sweet and salty, lime infused soy sauce added a very nice brightness to this hearty stew. I am not really sure what compelled me to add it – probably that “careless” cooking attitude that pops up in my head every so often. Regardless, i will be adding ponzu to spicy slow-cooked stews from now on!
- 2 1/2 lbs chuck roast, cubed into 2" chunks ((I asked the butcher to cut it for me))
- 4-5 carrots, cut into 2" chunks
- 4-5 celery stalks, chopped
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 c cilantro, chopped
- 2 14 oz cans of diced tomatoes & green chilies ((I used mild))
- 1 12 oz jar of salsa verde*
- 3-4 T lime ponzu
- 1-2 t chili powder ((optional))
- 3 T fresh chives ((for garnish))
- Preheat oven to 275°. Add all ingredients to a large dutch oven. Stir to combine. Cover and bake at 275° for 5 hours.
- Once cooking time is complete, stir and serve over rice. Garnish with fresh chopped chives.
- *if you prefer a more mild version of this stew, you may substitute 2 cans of mild chopped green chillies and 3 c chicken broth for the salsa verde.