As photos of snowy scenes in the Sierra Nevada appear on our screens, I can’t help remembering the times I went with my dogs up to Hope Valley for a few days of cross-country skiing. Coming back to my cabin at Sorensen’s Resort all tired out and hungry, I could hardly wait to change out of my wet ski clothes and walk down to the resort’s little café for dinner next to the crackling fire. The entrée of choice was Sorensen’s Classic Beef Burgundy Stew, and if it came to the table with a chunk of rustic bread and a butter lettuce salad with shallots, Stilton blue cheese, and a simple vinaigrette, we were in snow heaven.
This recipe serves 8, but if you have a smaller crowd, the leftovers will be great the next day served over wide noodles.
2 pounds beef stew meat, trimmed and cubed
2 tablespoons olive oil
¼ cup butter
1 medium white or yellow onion, diced
3 teaspoons course black pepper, divided
4 tablespoons fresh garlic, chopped and divided
Pinch of salt
1½ quarts beef broth
1 quart hearty red wine
2 bay leaves
1½ tablespoons beef broth base
3 carrots, peeled and julienne sliced
1 small bunch of celery, julienne sliced
3-4 medium white or red potatoes, quartered
2 tablespoons dry parsley
2 tablespoons dry basil
2 cups mushrooms, sliced
2 tablespoons cornstarch
½ cup water
Heat the olive oil and butter in a medium-size frying pan over medium-high heat. Add beef and diced onion and sauté until browned. Add 1 teaspoon black pepper, 1 tablespoon garlic, and a pinch of salt.
While the meat is cooking, combine the beef broth, wine, and bay leaves in a large soup/stew pot and bring to a boil. Turn down to a simmer and carefully add the meat mixture. Season with remaining garlic, pepper, and 1 tablespoon of the beef base. Stir thoroughly, cover, and cook for 1 hour, or until the meat is tender.
Add the carrots, celery, and potatoes and cook for another 30–45 minutes. In the last 20 minutes of cooking, add the dry herbs and mushrooms. Check and adjust for flavor, adding the last ½ teaspoon of beef base, if needed.
Make a roux by dissolving the cornstarch in water and slowly add to the stew to thicken. Stir for approximately 5 minutes. Serve hot.
14255 Hwy. 88 – Hope Valley, CA 96120 – 1.800.423.9949 www.sorensensresort.com