French Oven Beef Stew

Luscious and delicious this French Oven Beef Stew was perfect on the evening of our first hard frost.
Paula Blanchard was the wife of Michigan's Governor James J. Blanchard and donated this recipe to the Historical Mackinac Island Cook Book in 1980.  I have adapted the recipe somewhat but have made it many times over the years as a standby.  I love that you make it in one dish in the oven, it simmers all day, and it is delicious!

Easy one pot meals herald the fall season and coming of winter.
Ingredients for French Oven Beef Stew:

3 pounds beef stew meat cubed (recipe asked for 2 pounds)
2 onions cut in eights
3 stalks celery in 1" dice
4 large carrots in 1" dice
1 can undiluted tomato soup (recipe called for 1 C. tomato juice)
1/3 C. quick tapioca
1 T. sugar
1 T. salt
1 t. pepper (recipe asked for 1/4 t.)
1/2 t. basil
2 potatoes cut into 1" chunks
1 can beef stock
NOTE:  You may as I did substitute a 2 1/2 pound bag of frozen stew vegetables for all of the listed vegetables.  Skipping the add potatoes step.

Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.

Brown the chunks of beef.
Brown the meat.  combine beef, onions, celery, and carrots in a covered dutch oven.  (Or the frozen stew vegetables.)

Adding a 2 1/2 pound bag of frozen stew vegetables really makes this a Quick Fix meal.
Combine tomato soup, stock, tapioca, sugar, salt, pepper, and basil and pour over the meat and vegetables. 

Soup, stock, tapioca, and seasonings are whisked together.
Cover and bake 2 1/2 hours. (I just cooked 3 1/2 hours and skipped the add potatoes.)

Add the potatoes and return to the oven in covered casserole for an hour longer.  Yield 6-8 servings.

What a nice warming dish for a cold dreary fall day!  Baked a batch of Cinnadoodles to have for dessert!


Myrna said...

Hi Diane, Looks so good. We just had our first hard frost last night also. Nice to be able to do oven meals again. I am going to try this recipe. Do you like the tomato soup better than the juice?

Diane Cosby said...

Honestly Myrna I couldn't tell you I use both and like both. I just use whichever I have handy. The tomato soup tends to make a thicker sauce but depending on how long I keep it simmering before serving I often add a bit of water anyway.