You may remember from our previous posts that we occasionally participate in the Daring Cooks’ challenges, and in November I helped Liz over at Onions and Chocolate prepare a beef stew, but not just any beef stew – one that was made with lots of red tea.
I must say the stew was delicious, and very different than something I would have thought to do otherwise. Liz made a few changes (such as adding less cinnamon sticks than the recipe called for) that made the flavor more savory rather than sweet, and I must say I liked those changes.
Beef Braised in Rooibos Tea with Sweet Potatoes
1¼ pounds (600 gm) brisket or stewing beef, trimmed and cut into 2-inch (5 cm) chunks
2 tablespoons (30 ml) (18 gm) (? oz) flour
1 tablespoon (15 m) oil
2 onions, sliced
2 celery stalks, sliced
3 garlic cloves, crushed
1 tablespoon (15 ml) (8 gm) tomato concentrate
5 rooibos tea bags (or 2 tablespoons loose tea leaves)
1 quart (1 litre) just-boiled water
5 tablespoons (75 ml) red wine vinegar
4 strips unwaxed orange peel, pith removed (the peel of about half an orange)
2 cinnamon sticks
2 inches (5 cm) fresh ginger, peeled and sliced
4 small sweet potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced
¾ cup (175 ml) mild honey (optional)
cilantro (coriander) leaves, to garnish
salt and pepper, to taste
Look at how smart Liz is – she has a tube of tomato paste! I need to upgrade my kitchen to what I am now calling “Liz standard.” Additions include mashing my garlic and salt, tubes of fancy tomato paste, and flour dusters.
Add your tea, right about now, with that cinnamon and tomato paste and orange peel. Now you’re going to let it simmer for a few hours while you go play Wii Fitness or chat with your friends or make some other recipes, or all of the above.
Add them after two hours, and let it go another thirty minutes or forty five. Also, make sure you taste along the way – we ended up taking out the cinnamon and orange during those two hours because it was getting to be a sweet stew, and also using a roux to thicken it up a bit.
What’s your favorite kind of stew? A hearty beef, or something white with some beans?