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Savory Beef and Vegetable Stew

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Beef Stew with Vegetables 2

This recipe is slow cooking but the every bit of it is totally worth the wait. If you’re like me who likes beef stews, I know you would appreciate the process of why beef has to be cooked slowly over a long period of time. If you have no patience for waiting, then you’re better off ordering your beef stews from a restaurant or let someone else cook for you.

This is the dish where the first bite or smell gets you hungry immediately. And it also makes you remember what it was like to taste it for the first time as a child. For me, it was my grandma who made it for dinner. She let us sit on our chairs and wait as she ladled on this steamy sauce onto our plates. Nothing beats that first bite into the soft and moist meat.

It makes me feel all warm and nice when I accomplish a recipe that my ancestors before me have perfected long ago. It’s like I have passed the test. Now I am ready to make my kids feel the same way. I want them to experience the sensation of tasting a good home cooked meal that would satisfy them completely. I know they’ll never forget that. And to me, that would be mission accomplished.

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1/3 cup Italian salad dressing
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 teaspoons beef bouillon granules
  • 1 (14.5 ounce) can diced tomatoes, undrained
  • 1 (10.5 ounce) can condensed beef broth
  • 1 (8 ounce) can tomato sauce
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 6 small potatoes, quartered
  • 6 carrots, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 green bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons cold water

Description

  1. Warm up your large skillet or Dutch oven over medium heat. Place in the beef and Italian dressing and cook until the meat is browned. That should be about 5 minutes.
  2. Next, add 2 cups of water, beef bouillon, diced tomatoes, beef broth, tomato sauce, garlic, bay leaf, salt, pepper and oregano to the skillet. Bring this one to a boil.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover it up and simmer until the meat is tender. That takes about an hour and a half.
  4. Then, add in potatoes, carrots, bell pepper and onion into the stew. Cover this and simmer over low heat this time. This takes another 45 minutes.
  5. Mix flour and cold water in a small bowl. Then add this to the stew mixture and stir slowly. Bring this to a boil and cook until the stew sauce has thickened. Give this about 2 minutes. Discard the bay leaf. Best served hot.

Barbecued Beef & Vegetable Kebabs

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Barbecued Beef & Vegetable Kebabs

Sundays are the best family times ever. This is when I get some relatives and their kids to come over and get together to catch up on things. I am very close to family so I never want this tradition to stop. My parents did it this way and I have always grown up to the closeness and bond of our family. Cousins, uncle and aunts join in and make a mess on the lawn and the pool. It’s great to have them over.

It’s a good excuse for me to take out the grill and fire it up. I come from a family of great cooks who showcase their talents best on the grill. But while the rest of them are busy with their burgers, hotdogs and steaks, I take this chance to show them kebabs. It’s absolutely my favorite thing to grill. They’re easy and I can use whatever vegetable I want to skewer with the meat.

If you haven’t had kebabs before, I would be very surprised. They’re just about as easy to make as any barbequed meat (but you put it on a stick instead). The most important thing to me when making kebabs is the type of vegetables that go with the meat. I am particularly fond of beef so I am making it a beef and vegetable kebab. Try this recipe out whenever you use your grill at home. It’s a wonderful alternative to hotdogs and burgers but just a tad healthier too.

Ingredients

  • 12 bamboo skewers for this recipe.
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 fresh red chilli, finely chopped
  • 1 garlic clove, crushed
  • 1 tbs fresh thyme leaves
  • Salt & freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 lb beef rump steak, fat trimmed, cut into 2cm cubes
  • 7 oz button mushrooms, halved
  • 1 red capsicum, deseeded, cubed
  • 2 zucchini, thickly sliced
  • 2 corn cobs, husks and silk removed, cut into quarters
  • 1 1/2 tbs olive oil, extra
  • 3 tsp red wine vinegar
  • salad leaves, washed, dried

Directions

  1. First combine the oil, chili, thyme, garlic, salt and pepper in a small bowl. Next, soak 12 bamboo skewers in cold water for 5 minutes. Drain and dry with paper towels. Then thread in the beef, mushrooms, capsicum and zucchini alternately onto the skewers. Make sure to brush the skewers with some of the oil mixture.
  2. Cut 8 pieces of foil that’s big enough to cover a piece of corn. Place one corn in the center of the foil and brush with a little oil mixture. Wrap up the corn properly.
  3. Then heat up the barbecue grill or chargrill on high. When ready, reduce the heat to medium. Place the corn on the grill and cook for 15 minutes constantly turning until the corn is bright yellow. That should mean the kernels are tender and firm to the bite.
  4. When the corn has been cooking for a few minutes, place the kebabs on the barbecue and grill. Make sure to turn each side constantly while brushing it with the oil mixture to keep it moist. Do this for about 6 to 8 minutes. If you are using a chargrill, you’ll need to do two batches.
  5. In a small jug, combine the extra oil, vinegar and some salt and pepper to taste. Then place the kebabs, corn pieces and salad leaves in serving bowls. Drizzle the salad dressing on the leaves and serve while the kebabs are hot off the grill.
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