Tackling World Cup Inspired Recipes With Aldi Supermarket: Belgium Stoofvlees (Beef Stew) #SP


The World Cup is in full swing, the football has been entertaining, VAR has added more drama to the games and more importantly, England are doing the Nation proud!

Aldi the Grocer of the Year has challenged me to cook a new dish inspired by one of England's opponents and with England playing Belgium this week i thought i would tackle a traditional Belgium dish, but cooked with ingredients from around the British Isles. I decided to attempt to cook Belgium's national dish Stoofvlees as it's main ingredient is beer and the fact i love a good heart meal. What is Stoofvlees you ask? Stoofvlees is a flemish spiced beef stew, traditionally served with frites; i opted for wedges. It looks great and tastes good so how did i get on?....

Preperation, Equipment & Cooking Times

It will take you 10 minutes to prep all of the ingredients and over two hours to cook a Stoofvlees.
You will need a good cast-iron casserole dish, a chopping board and a sharp knife.

Ingredients 

To serve four you will require the following ingredients which i purchased all from Aldi besides from the bay leaves as i already had them in the cupboard :):
  • 1kg of stewing beef, cut into large chunks - x3 Ashfield Farm Lean Diced Beef 
  • 2 large onions 
  • 2 bay leaves, 
  • 2 tbsp of brown sugar
  • a few sprigs of fresh thyme
  •  a few sprigs of fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 2 slices of brown bread 
  • 2 heaped tbsp of  mustard 
  • 1 litre or beer (Guinness)
  • 1 tbsp of balsamic vinegar 
  • 2 knobs of butter
  • Vegetable oil 
  • Sea salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
I managed to buy this huge variety of products for under £30, which shows you just what great value and variety on offer in store. Did you know that Aldi has great value deals on meats and fruit/ veg every week as part of their Super 6 deals, which you can check here: https://www.aldi.co.uk/c/super-6?text=super%206

Method

1. Start by peeling and roughly dicing two large onions.


2. Grab your casserole dish and on a medium heat slowly melt a know of butter and add 1 tbsp of vegetable oil.


3.  Chuck in your onions and sauté until soft and are just starting to brown. Once browned, remove from the pot and aside in a bowl or container.


4. Add in another 1 or 2 tbsp of oil to the dish. Then use your freshly ground black pepper and sea salt to season your beef. Cut your beef in roughly 1-inch size cubes if you have a big joint and begin to cook on medium heat. It is wise to only cook a small amount of beef pieces at a time to ensure they are cooked well. Once all beef is browned, add each the batch to the onions to one side.




5. With an empty casserole dish begin to add in your beer and two tbsp of brown sugar. Bring to a boil and scrape the brown bits from the bottom of the casserole.


6. Once the beer and sugar comes to a boil it then be time to add in the onion and beef cubes back to the casserole- keeping on medium heat.


7. Next your will need to add in as many cloves of garlic as you wish, a few sprigs of fresh thyme and a few sprigs of fresh flat-leaf parsley in to your casserole.


8. Once the previous has added to the pot you will need to continue to give the stew-to-be a good stir and bring to a simmer.


9. Add in two slices of brown bread, with 1 tbsp of mustard on each slice of bread and place both slices (mustard side down) on top of the stew. The bread will disintegrate completely, adding flavour to the stew and thickening the sauce.




10.  One the bread has been added then you need to let the stew simmer, uncovered for 1.5 hours, stirring every 30 minutes. After three stirs you can then put the lid back on the dish and simmer for another 15 minutes; it will add more moisture back to the Stoofvlees.


11. Remove from heat after almost 2 hours of cooking. Remove the cloves, thyme and flat-leaf parsley if you can find then using any utensil you have to hand.

12. Put in 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar and stir your stoofvlees well.


13. Now you can even serve the stoofvlees warm with a side of frites and sweet potato fries or you can allow the flavours to build up more by allow the dish to cool and stored, to consume within after
12 hours. Why? The flemish say it always taste better the day after!

Seasoned Wedges

To go with the dish i opted for wedges; boiled for 20 minutes, chopped in to quarters, a dash of oil and  BBQ spices; finished off in the oven for 20 minutes.




So here you go, this is what i manged to cook. I decided to accompany the meal with a little red win and some Jim Beam Bourbon crisps (yum). The great thing about the dish is that i get to eat it all again as it only gets better when left for longer! It was my first time cooking with beer and i really have enjoyed all of the flavours coming together. The recipe wasn't too tough, but it did take longer than i thought.



Here are some other recipes for Belgium Stoofvlees - Beef Stew if you fancy giving it a go:
https://thehungrybelgian.com/2013/07/05/flemish-beef-stew/
http://www.elddis.co.uk/hub/article/81/recipe---belgian-stoofvlees
https://www.finedininglovers.com/recipes/main-course/beef-stew-recipe-stoverij/

A huge thanks to Aldi for giving giving me the opportunity to step out of my comfort zone and try something new. 

Yorkshire Dad

Part-time daddy and lifestyle blogger. Father of 2 boys under 2. Golfer, scare-fan, tea-lover, traveller, squash and poker player. I write on the @HuffPostUK http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/karl-young/

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