Although springtime made an appearance in Austin for a couple of days, the north winds blew it far away and winter has once again returned. It's supposed to stick around all week. I've been waiting for the cold weather to return to make a warm and satisfying beef stew.
As the winds howl outside I'm happily chopping onions, carrots, celery and red potatoes. The fun thing about cooking is that you can be adventurous and think of what else might enhance the recipe that's guiding you (and I emphasize guiding you). I bought organic red sweet potatoes from the farmer's market last weekend which are supposed to stay firmer when cooked .... and are less sweet. Perfect for soups and stews I was told. So in they go! The recipe doesn't call for green beans, but they looked so wonderful in the supermarket I had to buy a few to throw into my stew as well. More vitamins if you ask me. Gotta throw in a few frozen peas too!
Add beef stock, some herbs and spices and let simmer for a couple of hours... YUM! Soooo good... and good for you!
I was never a big stew fan, and still don't make it very often, but now that I can add to it things that I like it's fun to experiment. Now I can see how healthy it can be as you add fresh vitamin-packed ingredients. The red sweet potatoes didn't stay firm, but added a thickness and flavor to the whole package that was perfect!
Today is my beautiful mom's birthday too. Wish I could spend it with her. But I'll be thinking of her and wishing for her the happiest of days...