There is nothing better in the fall and winter than to come into the house and be welcomed by the smell of a hearty soup or stew cooking in the slow cooker.
It’s been a cool and rainy week here and so I decided it was time to make one of our favourite slow cooker recipes.
Beef Stew With Dumplings
Brown l lb of stewing meat until all sides are nicely browned.
Depending on the size of your frying pan, you may need to brown half the meat and then do the second half; which is what I had to do.
While meat is browning, coarsely chop ½ of a medium onion and 2 large stalks of celery. Add to slow cooker.
Peel 2 to 3 large potatoes and 3 to 4 large carrots. Cut into bite sized pieces and add them to the slow cooker.
Go through your freezer and find all the little packages of leftover frozen vegetables.
Empty those into the slow cooker too.
Transfer browned meat from frying pan to slow cooker.
Deglaze the pan with 1 cup of water.
Pour broth into the slow cooker.
Next add one pint of canned tomatoes and one pint of beef stock plus one pint of water.
This final ingredient is optional. I had an abundance of okra from our CSA last summer and so I dehydrated most of it to use in soups and stews. The flavour it adds is subtle but we like it. Add 2 tbsp of dried okra.
Stir in heaping teaspoon of minced garlic and ½ tsp salt and ¼ tsp pepper.
Cover with lid and cook on low for 8 to 10 hrs.
30 to 40 minutes before you want to serve the stew, turn the slow cooker to high. After fifteen to twenty minutes on high, add the dumplings.
Recipe for Dumplings
1 c all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
2 tbsp dried parsley
½ tsp salt
1 beaten egg
¼ c milk
2 tbsp vegetable oil
Combine dry ingredients in a medium sized bowl. In a measuring cup beat together milk, egg and oil. Stir into the flour mixture. You’ll end up with a very thick batter that looks like this:
Drop the batter by the spoonful directly on top of the bubbly stew.
Replace cover on slow cooker and allow the dumplings to cook for 20 minutes until they are puffed up like this:
Remove dumplings and serve with a large bowl of that delicious beef stew.
I cut one of the dumplings open and took a picture so that you could see how tender and fluffy the dumplings are inside.