We are on the road a great deal, and cooking while on the road is a risky proposition. You never know, when you rent a house, what the state of the kitchen will be. When we ARE at home, I often hit that food-box life, so as to avoid adding substantially to the compost piles of New York state. But the past couple of days have been crisp enough to trigger The Stew Reflex, so I logged onto Fresh Direct and got busy.
As a service oriented submissive, one of the most satisfying moments on my path is seeing my Beloved Spousemeister enjoying a meal I have prepared for him. It may seem odd, but that moment of satisfaction is a beautifully subtle spiritgasm, unlike anything else.
SO today, I fucked around and made my first stew of the season. And, damn, y’all.
Someone on Facebook asked for the recipe, which I don’t have, since I made that shit up but I can share my experience, and you can make your own stewgasm right along with me!
Beef and Lamb motherfucking Stew, yo.
OKAY. SO I got 2 pounds of organic free-range hormone-free blah blah hug this damn cow stew meat, and a pound of Kosher lamb stew meat. I marinated it for a few hours in DAMN GOOD evoo, and a fuckton of organic all-natural garlic powder.
Then this is when shit got real.
Plain motherfucking yogurt. You heard me. It is the best way to tenderise meats, hands-down, period. Chemically, milk is amazing for breaking down meat JUST ENOUGH to be tender without losing the good texture. That’s why buttermilk marinated fried chicken rocks the goddamn mic.
Yeah, so plain yogurt? I took one package of that shit, blended it smooth, and stirred it in. Let THAT marinate for another hour, covered, at room temp. I got my big ass cast iron Dutch oven, heated more of that oil. I took a clean brown paper bag, and poured a bunch of tapioca flour into it. Yep. Tapioca flour. Smoothest and most taste-free gravymaking an’ thickening agent around. Coated the meat chunx in the tapioca flour, shook it like a polaroid picture (yas I know but I still like the song) and fried the lamb & beef till lightly browned. Took 3 batches to get them all done, YMMV, adding oil as necessary.
Then I took 2 entire heads of chopped garlic cloves and fried them in the fond on the bottom of the pot. Because fuck a vampire. Deglazed the pan with plenty o’ red wine. While I obviously don’t buy wine, we get bottles now and then as gifts or in hotels and rental homes. I always throw ‘em in the suitcase and bust them out for cooking. The awesome thing is you can pour the leftover wine in a ziplock and freeze them fuckers for later use. Boom.
Okay, so now I let some of the alcohol cook off, added the fried lamb & beefs back into the pot with 2 jalapeños that I’d sliced in half and threw the fuck in. Poured in water to cover it with a thumb’s worth extra for the roots to come later, and stirred in a few exceedingly mad big ass spoons of concentrated beef stock paste. Laid 3 bunches of fresh herbs on top: sage, thyme and oregano. Brought it up to a nice boil and threw that fucker in the oven on 350° for an hour.
At an hour, I took it from the oven, pulled the herbs out. Did my root mojo: sweet potato, Japanese turnips, red onions. Salted them really well, since I had not done any salty jamz yet, and gently stirred them fuckers in.
The meat was doing well, but I was a sad about the flavor…it was just kinda…meh. I could sense the greatness trying to be free but it was not there. Not yet. It was flat. It wasn’t making me sing and I was seriously fucking sad. Okay, I thought about it. I threw down with a tablespoon of dark brown sugar, a bit more salt, some white pepper. Then I was like, wait…something else…maybe a dash of vinegar? Some tomato paste? Then I fucking eurekaed and put in – stay with me now – a few generous squirts of…organic ketchup. Kept tasting, I was now less sad, so I crossed myself and put that mufucker back in for hour number 2.
After 2 hours simmering, I deovened it. The roots are perfect, the meat is tender and bouncy, and the gravy IS. INSANE.
I was a little apprehensive when I set the bowl down for my Spousemeister…would it be all that? He took several bites. Put his spoon down. “Dahling. It is SO. Good.”
SO, I’m all tingly.
He ate a few more bites, and stopped again.
“No, it is not just so good. It is AMAZING. AMAZING.”
SO fucking goooooood.
Time to bask in the afterglow.