Although we haven't had very cold temperatures lately in Pennsylvania (today was 60 degrees!), this beef and wild rice stew still hits the spot. If you are one of my friends or family in Iowa this winter, then you will really enjoy this hearty stew! : ) The flavor is wonderful, and I love the addition of wild rice and diced tomatoes. It is a one pot meal that will feed a crowd. The original recipe below feeds 10 so be sure to cut the recipe in half if there are only a few of you. If you are entertaining, this would be the perfect meal, especially with a green salad and fresh bread.
1/3 cup. oil
4 lb. stewing beef, cubed
2 lg. onions, sliced
3 cloves garlic
1 bottle dry red wine
1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
1/4 cup. chopped parsley
1 (28 oz) can diced tomatoes, undrained
10-12 small peeled onions
6 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
1 lb. fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 cup uncooked wild rice, thoroughly washed
Heat oil in a skillet and saute the cubed meat in batches, being careful not to crowd the skillet, until well-browned. Transfer meat to a soup kettle or Dutch oven. Add onion and garlic to skillet; cook and stir until tender and golden in color. Remove to soup pot. Add a little red wine to the skillet and boil rapidly, stirring until the scrapings are free. Pour into the kettle. Season with thyme, oregano, and parsley. Measure in 1 1/2 (less if you half the recipe) cups red wine and enough water just to cover the meat. Bring to a simmer, cover and cook about 1 1/2 hours or until the meat is very tender.
Add tomatoes and their liquid, small onions, carrots, mushrooms, and 1 cup red wine. Add a few grindings of black pepper and adjust salt to taste. Stir the stew, bring to a boil and cook 15 minutes, uncovered. Add the wild rice. Cover, bring back to a simmer, and cook until the rice is tender, about 45 minutes to 1 hour.
***Be sure to cut the cooking times in half if you cut the recipe in half.