Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Recipe: Stew Tacos

Stew Meat is not something you use see used much outside of well...stews.  However, when it goes on sale  you can get meat with great flavor for only a few dollars.  Whats more is that it tends to be pretty filling.  This recipe came about after I had made a batch of my lentil stew but had some carrot and onion left over and some stew meat in the freezer.  I had a craving for tacos but didn't want to buy the ground beef that was currently ~$4 a pound.  The end result was something a little different but incredibly delicious.  The meat is quickly seared so that it is tender and the carrots add a sweetness and interesting twist to a common classic.

You will need:
1 pack taco seasoning (per pound of meat)
1 lbs Stew Meat trimmed of any excessively fatty or gristly pieces
1/2 onion (yellow preferred) diced or cut into half moons
1-2 carrots diced
1 can diced tomatoes with green chilies, drained (mild-hot depending on preference)
tortillas (I used 8'' soft flour ones)
cheese of choice

Start by searing the meat in a large skillet set over medium high heat.  Once meat is browned on all sides and no pink is showing on the outside remove from the pan and let drain on a paper towel covered plate.  Make sure to not overcook as meat will continue to cook later.  Using a paper towel or by pouring remove some of the drippings from the pan, leaving enough to cook the onions and carrots.  Add the onions, salt, and pepper to the hot pan. Saute until tender (or about 5-8 minutes).  Once the onions are just soft add the carrots and continue cooking another 5 minutes until tender.  Add tomatoes. Return meat to pan and add the taco seasoning and required water (follow packet directions).  Salsa can be added at this time if desired for flavoring.  Simmer for 3-5 minutes until thickened.

Serves ~4-8 depending on size of serving

If you have a gas stove you can toast the tortillas directly over the burners.  First, find a set of kitchen tongs.  Second, turn the burner onto high and place tortilla over it.  Third, and with emphasis, DO NOT WALK AWAY.  Every 15-20 seconds flip the tortilla until warm and just a bit charred.  This will add a lot of flavor.

Note:  As you may have noticed, I have not included a picture with this post.  Try as I might I could not make these look pretty.  They are rustic and delicious though, and that more than makes up for it.

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