From the kitchen of One Perfect Bite...This is a great entrée for a family meal. It's made with a standard list of stew ingredients, but the addition of spicy canned tomatoes and hominy give it a slightly Southwestern bent. Hominy is made from dried corn kernels that have been soaked in a lye or lime solution. Soaking removes the tough outer shells of the kernels and produces a more flavorful and nutritious niblet that has a creamier texture than corn. It is used in Native American and Mexican cooking and it is a popular addition to dishes in the Southern and Southwestern United States. While this dish can be prepared stovetop, today's recipe, developed by Family Circle magazine, utilizes a slow-cooker to make the stew. It is the type of entrée that will appeal to very busy cooks, and it certainly is easy enough for a novice to make. I must admit that I fussed a bit with this recipe. I browned the meat and vegetables before putting them into the slow cooker. I think browning adds enormous flavor to the stew and it is something that I always do, though I'm willing to admit it probably falls into the category of not necessary but nice. I also cut back on the length of time I cooked the stew because I wanted the meat to retain some texture. Those of you who try this recipe will not be disappointed. It is not gourmet fare, but it is perfect for a rainy fall night. Here's how the stew is made.
Beef and Hominy Stew...from the kitchen of One Perfect Bite courtesy of Family Circle magazine
1 large onion, chopped
1-3/4 pounds boneless beef chuck, cut into 1-1/2-inch pieces
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 green pepper, cored, seeded and chopped
3 carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
3 ribs celery, cut into 1-inch pieces
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 can (14.5 ounces) petite diced tomatoes with chiles
1 cup reduced-sodium beef broth
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 can (15 ounces) hominy, drained and rinsed
Corn tortillas and salad (optional)
1) Coat slow cooker bowl with nonstick cooking spray. Place onion in bottom and add beef; season with salt. Add green pepper, carrots, celery and garlic. Pour tomatoes and 3/4 cup of the broth over the top.
2) Cover and cook on HIGH for 6 hours or LOW for 8 hours.
3) Mix cornstarch with remaining 1/4 cup of broth until smooth. Stir into slow cooker during last 15 minutes of cooking. Add hominy and heat through. Serve with corn tortillas and salad, if desired. Yield: 6 servings.
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