Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Jordanian Beef Stew

This recipe defies all laws of the cooking universe as I knew them before making this meal.  It's practically magic.  There are only two spices and a handful of ingredients.  The meat cooks for an hour in plain old bland water.  There is no effort involved.  And yet this is the most delicious thing I've eaten all year.  I don't know quite why or how it's possible but I'm not complaining instead I plan in making this again and again and again.

Basically this is Beef Burgundy without all the esoteric cooking instructions or all the extra fat.  Except this beef stew is from a Jordanian recipe and is twice as delicious.  I didn't even bother serving it over rice or with yogurt like the original recipe called for because that would have just distracted from the flavors of the beef which didn't need anything added to it to make it tasty. 

Don't let the long cooking time deter you from wanting to make this.  Once you chop everything the food needs no attention so you won't notice how long the beef has been cooking.  Start it in the morning some day you have off and poke at it periodically, when its done let it cool and you'll have something great to eat that night or later in the week.  Personally I love food that cooks itself while I'm off watching a movie or playing with the dog.  This is the best kind of recipe if you ask me.

Jordanian Beef Stew
1 pound beef, cut into bite sized pieces
1 pound green beans, cut into 2 inch pieces
1 pound tomatoes, coarsely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
2 teaspoons coriander
2 teaspoons cumin

Sprinkle the beef with salt and pepper, place in a large skillet, and pour water over the beef until just cover. Place lid on skillet and simmer over a medium low heat for about 30 minutes or until meat is brown.

Remove 1 cup of the broth from the beef and reserve it in the bowl of your food processor.

Put the cut up green beans in with the beef and cook until tender.

Add tomatoes and garlic to the food processor and pulse until smooth. 

Once beans are done pour off a bit of water from the simmering beef so that there is enough to mostly cover the beef but there is enough room in skillet to add the tomato mixture. 

Add pureed tomato mixture, coriander and cumin to skillet.  Salt and pepper generously.  Allow to simmer uncovered for another hour or until beef is fork tender.  Will taste even better a couple days after cooking when its had time to marinate in the refrigerator.


Mary C. said...

Emily, this is "magic" indeed! Smells great! Tastes better! And no fuss preparation! What could be better? This is going to become a staple in our house!

Emily said...

It just doesn't seem possible does it? This is so good but takes no work, its amazing. It is my new favorite as well.

Aneela Maharaj said...

Hey Emily,

Another great post! Sounds delicious and I might give it a try with soya chunks (being vegetarian has it's limit.) Anyway, I was chopping the mint for my yoghurt dip and thought of you (maybe because of the common ingredient in the braised cucumber.) Not sure if the dip qualifies for the French diet, but it seems healthy enough. It can be found here: http://www.aneelamaharaj.blogspot.com/


Emily said...

Thanks, Aneela. If you figure out a way to make this vegetarian you'll have to post about it, that would be interesting. And the dip looks delicious I will have to give it a try.

Aida said...


I made this, and while the stew was excellent, my beef was hard to chew. Any suggestions for next time?

Emily said...

Aida, try cooking it longer at a low temperature. If you cook it too fast the collagen in the meat releases all the liquid that keeps it tender and you get tough stringy meat. It's worth the extra wait for the amazingly tender beef you end up with after cooking it for a long while.

Aida said...

Your blog is full of delicious recipes for Montignac. I love coming here & getting great & tasty ideas for meals. Thank you for all your effort, and for taking the time to answer questions!

Emily said...

You are very welcome Adia. Thanks for visiting, I'm glad you enjoy the recipes.

Aida said...


I took your advice, and cooked the beef much longer on very low heat. I simmered the beans a long time too, chopped tomatoes somewhat bigger than recommended.

In any case, it turned out delicious. One of the best things I've EVER made. The beef was so well cooked it fell apart in the spoon, while the beans were refreshing. And it was sooo filling.

Thanks again for the recipe.

Emily said...

Aida, I'm glad you enjoyed the recipe and that it worked out well for you the second time around. Now the hard part is resisting the urge to want to eat this for dinner every night because it's so good.