“I will always associate beef stew with happiness.” These are the opening words to the descriptive essay I needed to write for my Freed Hardeman’s Dual Enrollment English class. After that essay, people started to talk about the beef stew, my Granny’s, beef stew.
The point of the writing assignment was to be very descriptive to help visualize what you wanted to show. Because of this, I was using sentences like “the potatoes melt in the mouth and all the juice that they have absorbed from the couple of hours of socializing with the beef and vegetables just burst like a water balloon” and “ With every chew, I taste a little bit of the onion, celery, and tomato until eventually, all the juice has left and what remains is the sweet and savory taste of the beef, which has a lasting effect until I’m able for another bite.”
My grandmother is from South America and the country of Chile. She moved to the United States when she turned 23. She lived in Long Island, New York for 15 years then moved to Tennessee, so she could be with the rest of her family and has stayed in Tennessee since.
When I asked my grandma what she thought about people talking about her stew, she said she felt it was “cool” how people she hasn’t met were suddenly interested. Has this made you think about what this tastes like?
The Eagle’s Eye crew decided to taste test for themselves and agreed that it lives up to the hype that I built up around the stew. In my essay I declared, “it will be one of the best foods I will ever eat.” To try it for yourself, follow the recipe below.
Mrs. Cabrera’s Beef Stew
1 10-12 quart stock pot
4 Tablespoons (T) of cooking oil
2 cut up onions
4 lbs of stew meat
6 chopped stalks of celery
1 1/2 lbs carrots cut up
2 cans of stewed tomatoes (14 oz)
4 to 6 chopped potatoes
2 t. paprika
1 ½ t. oregano
1 ½ t. garlic
2 t. black pepper
2 t. basil
4 beef bouillon cubes or 5 tsp of “Better than Bouillon” paste
Cook the 4 lbs of stew meat in the stock pot in the oil. Add paprika, oregano, garlic, pepper, and basil. Add the 2 chopped onions when the meat is browned. Continue cooking and add chopped celery. Add a little water if needed to keep from sticking. Add the stewed tomatoes, the bouillon cubes or bouillon paste along with 10 cups of water. When the stew comes to a boil, turn to a simmer and cook until the meat is tender. Add the chopped carrots and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the chopped potatoes. Simmer until the potatoes are just tender ( approximately 7 minutes). The potatoes will continue to cook, so do not overcook or the potatoes will break down too much.