Thursday, February 24, 2011

Italian Beef Stew AND . . . A Stylish Blogger Award!

This winter has me feeling a bit confused.  I go back and forth between craving comfort food and craving food that remind me of spring.  To be honest, I think my mood swings coincide with that of Mother Nature's.  One day, it's 45 degrees and brilliantly sunny, the next day - we are blessed with 18" of snow. 

I found this recipe from last month's edition of Cooking Light - I was pleasantly surprised at how good this recipe is.  My daughter had a few friends over, and they liked it, too.

Italian Beef Stew
Original Recipe by Cooking Light, Jan/ Feb 2011 edition
Yield: 8 servings
Hands-on time: 40 min.; Total time: 2 hr. 40 min.

7 tsp. olive oil, divided
1 1/2 C chopped onion
1/2 C chopped carrot
1 T minced garlic
1/4 C all-purpose flour
2 lb. boneless chuck roast, trimmed and cut into cubes
3/4 tsp. salt, divided
1/2 tsp. black pepper
1 C dry red wine
3 3/4 C chopped seeded & peeled plum tomato (about 2 lbs.)
1 1/2 C fat-free, lower-sodium beef broth
1/2 C water
2 tsp. chopped fresh oregano
2 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
1 (8 oz.) package of cremini mushrooms, quartered
3/4 C slices carrots (1/4" thick)
2 T chopped fresh basil
1 T chopped fresh parsley

1. Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat.  Add 1 tsp. oil to pan.  Add onion and chopped carrot; saute 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Add garlic, saute for 45 seconds, stirring constantly.  Remove from pan.

2. Add 1 T oil to pan.  Place 1/4 C flour in a shallow dish.  Sprinkle beef with 1/2 tsp. salt and pepper; dredge in flour.  Add half of beef to pan; saute 6 minutes, browning on all sides.  Remove from pan.  Repeat procedure.

3. Add wine to pan, and bring to a boil, scraping pan.  Cook until reduced to 1/3 C (about 5 minutes).  Return meat and the onion mixture to pan.  Add tomato and next 6 ingredients; bring to a boil.  Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 45 minutes, stirring occasionally.  Uncover, and stir in sliced carrot.  Simmer, uncovered, for 1 hour or until meat is very tender, stirring occasionally.  Discard bay leaf.  Stir in remaining 1/4 tsp. salt, basil, and parsley. 

Click here for a printable version of this recipe - Kitchen Groovy

ALSO - I am very honored to announce that I have been chosen as the recipient of The Stylish Blogger Award.  Wow - this journey has been quite a ride and I am so honored to be recognized by a fellow blogger and to be a part of this new community! 


There are guidelines attached to an award like this and they are as follows:

1. List 7 things about myself
2. Pass this award to 10 other Stylish bloggers
3. Notify them that they have been recognized!

So - want to know 7 things about me?  Say Yes!  :-)
1. I cannot function without coffee, however, it MUST have vanilla creamer in it.  If it doesn't, I'll pass!
2. I have been on a train that has derailed.
3.  I do not like romance, scary, thrillers, or anything that makes me cry - books or movies.
4. I have an excellent sense of direction.
5. I feel as though I was born to be a mom, and I LOVE my job as a SAHM. 
6. I am an extreme extravert, but I am also a homebody.
7. Mornings, which require me to get out of my super comfy bed, are my nemesis.

So - I would love to recognize the following blogs.  I admit that I am new to blogging, but through my journey, I have stumbled across these blogs.  I follow them and enjoy seeing what they are cooking.  What I have found is that we all are in a different stage of life, a different part of the country (or the world for that matter), but we all share a love of cooking and baking.  I continue to be inspired by these truly, amazing individuals.

1. Roti n Rice
2. Flour Dusted
3. Sweet Veg-E
4. Mediterranean Inspired Food
5. Sandra's Easy Cooking
6. Ryan Bakes
7. The Mom Chef - Taking On Magazines One Recipe at a Time
8. Sweets by Sillianah
9. Squash Blossom Babies
10. Baking Junkie

Might I also give a very necessary shout out to Sabrina from Eat, Drink, Be Merry. She is the lovelie who gave me this award.  I love her blog as she posts recipes of meals that I would absolutely cook up in my own kitchen. 

Please check out all of these cooking blogs for great recipe ideas - they are tried and true and will tell you whether or not a recipe actually works and tastes great. 

As always, enjoy and live with gusto!


  1. Like your chic wallpaper and congrats on the award! The recipe looks delish. My husband would love this!!

  2. We were pleasantly surprised at how good this was too. Yours looks fantastic!

    Congratulations on the award. It's well deserved. Thank you too for passing it on. I'm touched and honored to be included with these beautiful bloggers.

  3. Oh Catrina, your stew look insanely good, and I love your photos...making me bit hungry!:)
    Congrats on the award, and thank you so much for remembering me and my blog! I am truly honored!

  4. I am sorry I misspelled your name..Carina!:) typo error:)

  5. thanks for visiting my blog recently, i appreciate your sweet comments...and thank you so much for this award, carina!

    btw, your beef stew looks sooo savory and amazingly delicious! i envy your family!

  6. Congrats on your award! I too am a huge coffee fan (with creamer and splenda though :)). Thank you SO much for the award! It made my day. It was sweet of you to think of me and I enjoyed reading the 7 facts about you! Keep up the great work with your blog.

  7. Congratulations on your award! It is definitely well deserved. It is so sweet of you to pass it on to me. Thank you!

    Yes, I am confused by the weather too. I even made ice cream two weeks back and now it is all cold again :( Your Italian beef stew is perfect for now...warm and comforting!