Cold weather drives us to comfort food dishes like homemade Italian beef stew, paleo friendly, grain free. This is what healthy comfort food looks like. It’s NOT diet food. It’s not fat free. It’s not stuck in some frozen wrapper in the lean watcher section. It’s on top of the stove, wafting deep, flavorful beef, tomatoes and vegetables, telling our brain hearty food is at hand.
If I could only choose to cook one way, it would like this. Rustic, healthy, hearty, one pot dishes, adding in enough fat and wine to make a simple dish seem special. This is food for the home cook. If this were in one of the trendy restaurants, it would be short ribs and complicated sauces with a heaping of grains like barley or polenta. Nothing wrong with that kind of cooking, but at home, we need simple, approachable food that we can pop on top of the stove on a day the kids are home on a snow day, and time is short, but appetites are big.
This is the dish that a woman will love (cause it’s nutrition packed, grain free). This is the dish a man would marry her for, because comfort food and beef usually make a man happy. (Please don’t write me if I hurt anyone’s feelings or stereotypes; I’m making a point).
The Key to a good Italian Beef Stew is San Marzano Tomatoes.
I call this Italian style stew, because I added in a lot of San Marzano tomatoes, herbs, and wine to give it that Italian taste. I started out with olive oil, onions and garlic. I ended with a garnish of red chili pepper and freshly grated parmigiano reggiano.
Record temperatures in Nashville, snow on the deck (which I love, made us grateful for a hearty, healthy, Italian beef stew.
You may also be interested in my Paleo Friendly Vegetable Beef Soup.
You may also be interested in these amazing roast turnips.
- 2 pounds lean beef cubes
- 6 carrots
- 2 celery sticks, chopped
- 2 onions, chopped
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 2 large cans San Marzano Tomatoes order here
- 1 quart beef broth (or 1 tablespoon organic bouillon paste) (or can use water)
- 1 cup white wine (can use red)
- 2 handfuls parsley, divided
- fresh thyme
- 6 small turnips, large diced
- 1 bunch Tuscan kale, ribs removed, torn into pieces
- 1 cup frozen peas (optional)
- parmigiano reggiano cheese
- cracked red pepper to taste
- Season meat with salt and pepper.
- Brown meat in large dutch oven or frying pan.
- Remove meat, set aside on a plate.
- Add in onions, two carrots, finely chopped, celery. Cook for five minutes or until onions are softened, on medium low heat. Add in minced garlic and cook for about one minute. You don't want that garlic to go past pale golden.
- Deglaze pan by adding in ½ cup of white wine. You can use a red wine if you choose.
- Cook down for about ten minutes. Add in tomatoes. Just smoosh up with your hands, adding all tomato and juices.
- Add beef back in. Add in handful parsley, reserving some for garnish, bay leaves, fresh thyme.
- Add in 1 teaspoon salt, and black pepper.
- Cook on top of the stove on very low simmer for three hours, stirring frequently. Add beef broth or water a little at a time.
- This stew is a soupy stew, not very thick and you can choose not to add in the beef broth. The tomatoes with the beef and herbs will yield plenty of flavor.
- Remove bay leaves, and any parsley, or thyme stems.
- An hour before serving, roast carrots and turnips in oven for twenty minutes, tossed in olive oil and salt.
- Put into the stew, add in kale and frozen peas.
- Season again with salt and pepper, fresh chopped parsley.
- Serve with freshly grated parmigiano reggiano and red chili pepper.