Ingredients round up: a cup or two of good red wine, 2 T tomato paste, pearl onions, olive oil, 2-3 bay leaves, 2 potatoes, 2 onions, 2 turnips, 2 celery stalks, 2 carrots, 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, 1.5 lb sirloin steak or stewing beef.
Begin by chopping all of your veggies. This should be a rough chop.
Next, heat 2 T olive oil in a deep pot. When the oil is hot, sear the beef on all sides. You may have to do this in batches so as not to crowd the pan. Cook the beef just long enough to get a nice brown caramelized colour.
It will look like this. Don't worry about all those brown bits in the bottom. That is just flavour waiting to be included in our stew stock.
Add a cup or two of your favourite red wine. TIP: don't cook with anything you wouldn't drink! This will deglaze the pan. Scrape up some of those brown bits with a wooden spoon.
Time for the secret ingredient! In the spirit of OktoberFast, I decided to include a can of Creemore Springs Kellerbier. This is a hearty beer from a fantastic local micro-brewery - it should help beef up the stew. If you're not fortunate enough to have access to beer from Creemore Springs, just substitute your favourite dark ale.
Top up the pot with a few cups of beef stock.
Next, add all of your veggies: potato, celery, carrots, onion. Top up the pot with water so that the contents are just barely covered with liquid. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 5-10 minutes.
When the veggies have started to soften, add your flavouring agents: tomato paste, pearl onions, bay leaves and rosemary. Put on the lid and let this simmer for 90 minutes. The longer the better!