Nov 16, 2008

Dutch Winter Stew

It’s Sunday, just got back from a long walk in the park before the bad weather is supposed to set in. I have plenty of free time on my hands, lots of beef in the freezer, stocked up on vegetables, radio tuned in to the best Motown, northern soul music and my munchkin is napping. What more could a girl ask for?

It’s stew time! I love beef, I love vegetables, let’s just mix it all up and create the perfect thick, hearty stew. If this won’t keep you warm, nothing will!


2 pounds beef
1 large onion
1 large carrot
2 garlic cloves
1 celeriac root
1 leek
3 waxy potatoes
1 tsp sweet paprika powder
2 tbsp coarse mustard
1 tbsp flour
1/2 tsp curry powder
1 cup beef broth
1 cup beer
celeriac leaves
3 bay leaves
salt & pepper


My kind of autumn. Falling leaves, a cold wind and my playing boy closely followed by the comforting smell of a hearty stew.

What a beautiful sight, isn’t it? It really doesn’t matter if they’re bright colored summer vegetables or sober colored winter vegetables, there’s something enticing about seeing them together like this. Judging by the enormous amount of food in still life paintings, I guess I’m not alone.

Now don’t give me that look! Celeriac root is actually a fabulous vegetable! Forgotten, overlooked and frowned upon, but what its flavor does to stews and soups is nothing short of amazing. You really should give it a try, what have you got to lose?

Just cut about 1/2 inch off the bottom, cut the skin off and coarsely chop it.

Use 2 medium or 1 large carrot, peel it and give it a rough chop as well.

Do the same with the onion and grate two cloves of garlic while you’re at it.

Grab a bowl and combine 1 heaping tbsp flour with 1/2 tsp sweet paprika powder and 1/2 tsp curry powder. Give it a good stir.

The meat saga. Just chop it in coarse pieces and add a generous amount of salt and freshly cracked black pepper. Here comes the trick, spoon two tbsp coarse mustard on top, dig your hands in there and rub it all over the meat. It wasn’t until I started this foodblog I noticed how much coarse mustard I really use. It’s fantastic stuff.

Now grab yourself a stew pot. Yes, you can use your fancy Le Creuset and even tell me about it, because look what I bought! Isn’t it pretty? No matter how much I wanted one, I simply couldn’t justify spending E139 ($175) on a Le Creuset. Much to my surprise, I ran into this beauty. It’s a Jamie Oliver (Tefal at home series) stew pot, much cheaper than a Le Creuset but with all the same benefits. It came in a beautiful dark rose color and it looks so incredibly sleek and stylish.

Heat 3 tbsp butter and put your meat in there. Cook for 5 minutes, then add the onions. Give it a good stir and cook for another 2 minutes.

It should be smelling pretty darn good at this point, but we’ll up the fragrance a bit. Add the celeriac root, carrots and garlic. Give everything a good stir and cook for another 3 minutes.

After 3 minutes you can throw in the flour mixture. Coat the meat and vegetables with it and let the flour neutralize for about a minute.

Now the next step will be enough to make grown men cry. I want you to traumatize your husband, yes, I really do! Go over there and grab his bottle of beer. No, no arguing, just grab his beer and run with it as fast as you can. If you’ll wait around to see the look of pure horror and shock on his face, you’re probably going to be too late. Now quickly ‘borrow‘ 1 cup of beer. Tell him you’ll get it back to him later. You will!

Strip a few thyme sprigs and throw them in. I’ve used about 4 sprigs.

Pour the beer in with the meat and add 1 cup of beef broth. Make sure you use room temperature beer! Also throw in a good handful of chopped celeriac leaves.

This is what mine looked like before I popped the lid on. Bring to a boil and simmer for about 75 minutes over low heat.

Now go do something fun!

After those 75 glorious ‘me time’ minutes were up, I dragged myself away from my book and went back into the kitchen to cut up a leek.

Also peeled and chopped 3 large potatoes while I was there anyway.

Not to mention I cut a large handful of mushrooms in half. They’re normally not part of this dish, but if I have them around I always put them in. You can also leave the smaller ones whole.

Add everything to the stew, give it all a good stir and check to see if the stew might need a little more liquid. If it does just add a little water.

Simmer for another 30 to 45 minutes, until the potatoes are properly cooked.

Garnish with a little thyme and a generous amount of celeriac leaves and serve with mashed potatoes. Voila, you’re done!

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    1. 1

      Your pictures are beautiful – food looks delicious too! Stew tomorrow! We are supposed to get some snow here in Indiana tomorrow – just some flurries, but the stew will make our first little snow more welcome! Love your website – I just came over from PW’s site – I am making the green beans too! Now – I was going to do some serious cleaning today, but I just Have to explore your site some more!

      Jackie on Nov 17, 2008 @ 9:58 pm Reply
    2. 2

      I just found your site through The pictures are beautiful! I used to live in the Netherlands and I loved it. I miss the cheese! It’s great to see some of the meals I used to eat while I was there on here. It’s fun to read the Dutch comments too – my Dutch has gotten very rusty, but it’s nice to know that I can still muddle my way through!

      Noelle on Nov 17, 2008 @ 10:42 pm Reply
    3. 3

      Ree sent me here. I started loving cooking again a few years ago. After losing my husband 15 years ago I just cooked when I had to. I was stuck in the hospital one weekend and the only thing on was the Food Network! I have never used celery root and will try it with this recipe. I never have beer inthe house but do have wine. Will that work or is the wine flavor the wrong one? I guess my daughter could give me a beer.

      Lindie on Nov 17, 2008 @ 11:37 pm Reply
    4. 4

      Lindie, I think if I didn’t love cooking as much and didn’t have my little boy, I probably would do the same and only cook when I’d have to.

      I usually take turns between beer and wine. Stews are great with either red wine or beer. I usually keep little bags with 1 cup (or glass) of wine in the freezer solely for that purpose. I’d never tell food snobs, but it works great :)

      Kay on Nov 17, 2008 @ 11:43 pm Reply
    5. 5

      I’m duly impressed, Noelle … Dutch is probably one of the toughest languages in the world to learn due to our messed up grammar and spelling :)

      Kay on Nov 18, 2008 @ 12:18 am Reply
    6. 6

      You have a nice blog.

      celia on Nov 18, 2008 @ 1:02 am Reply
    7. 7

      I’m also found your blog courtesy of! Love your photos. and very glad to find a Dutch blog. I’m always looking to add new Dutch recipes to my collection. I’m Dutch on both sides of the family, though I married a Scandinavian. Couple generations back from the homeland, though.
      Your stew sounds great and perfect for the cooler weather.
      Have you bookmarked now!
      Kat-from California via Michigan via Drendt

      Kat on Nov 18, 2008 @ 3:58 am Reply
    8. 8

      please excuse the grammar error….. :)

      Kat on Nov 18, 2008 @ 4:05 am Reply
    9. 9

      Hi Kay, I also came over from The Pioneer Woman’s site. Your stew looks absolutely delicious and so does your tuna salad. Your writing is fun and engaging (like Ree’s!) and your photography is amazing. I’d love to hear about how you create the unique contrast/lighting in your photos (there were other PW readers inquiring in her comments, as well). I can tell right now I’m going to lose track of time and stay up WAY past my bedtime surfing your site tonight! So glad I found your site!

      Niteowl Nancy on Nov 18, 2008 @ 6:21 am Reply
    10. 10

      I’m new here … just found your website via The Pioneer Woman. Your green bean post was brilliant, and I can tell that I’m going to be a regular visitor here. Your blog is lovely, and the recipes and their instructions are so user friendly. I just know I’m going to be hungry by the time I’m done browsing your site! Oh, and this stew is great! Love celery root, too. YUM!

      Paula on Nov 18, 2008 @ 8:32 am Reply
    11. 11

      Niteowl Nancy, I got incredibly lucky with the light in my kitchen because what you see is all natural light. I explain a little about how I go about things in the ‘photos’ link underneath my previous thumbnails.

      Kay on Nov 18, 2008 @ 9:20 am Reply
    12. 12

      Hi! I linked to you from Ree’s also, but i was super excited to see that you live in Holland. I am an expat living in Leiden and working in The hague. I would LOVE to know what cut of meatt you bought for stew. Sukadalappen?

      Katie on Nov 18, 2008 @ 11:00 am Reply
    13. 13

      Hi Katie, yup, definite Gouda girl here :)

      I’ve actually used ‘runderlappen’. That’s the one thing that always confuses me, the American names for the meat we’re using here.

      Kay on Nov 18, 2008 @ 11:05 am Reply
    14. 14

      …and.. where did you get bacon in strips for the green bean bundles? I can only find it in circles at the Albert Heijn…

      katie on Nov 18, 2008 @ 11:09 am Reply
    15. 15

      AH only has the straight ones prepackaged (their own brand), so you’ll have to look in that section!

      Kay on Nov 18, 2008 @ 11:12 am Reply
    16. 16

      Yay! Thanks. Gouda is gorgeous, by the way.

      katie on Nov 18, 2008 @ 2:04 pm Reply
    17. 17

      Hi Kay,
      I also found your site Pioneer Woman. I have gotten interested in cooking again after being single again and kids gone, it is wonderful to find such nice recipes especially from other parts of this green/blue ball we live on. I am from Virginia, USA and it is cold and having snow showers so it is great to have this meal to look forward to. Thanks Kay. I have enjoyed your site(during the 75mins ‘fun’ time)

      Susi on Nov 18, 2008 @ 10:45 pm Reply
    18. 18

      Ohh tell me about it, Susi .. it’s so cold here, too! Like it turned winter overnight. I think they’re even predicting snow here as well, so I’m glad I got a stew pot now. I’ll be using it an awful lot :)

      Glad to hear you had a good time!

      Kay on Nov 18, 2008 @ 10:47 pm Reply
    19. 19

      It’s very nice to meet you! I am so glad PW introduced us. Your storyboards are making me hungry.

      Emily on Nov 19, 2008 @ 12:08 am Reply
    20. 20

      So glad you did that post on Pioneer Woman. Now I’ve got another cooking site to drool over! I always do green beans with bacon, but that gives a great new twist to my old recipe. Thanks again, I’ll be back!

      Crystal on Nov 19, 2008 @ 1:17 am Reply
    21. 21

      Wow what i great photography! I luv ur site!
      Can’t wait for the next posts ^_^

      Allea on Nov 19, 2008 @ 7:39 am Reply
    22. 22

      what A great photography…..

      Allea on Nov 19, 2008 @ 7:41 am Reply
    23. 23

      Thank you for sharing…I also linked from PW’s. I highly doubt I will be able to find celeriac root where I live. It looks similar to rutabaga. Are those two related? Also, is there a substitution for the beer?

      Katrina on Nov 19, 2008 @ 9:02 am Reply
    24. 24

      Katrina, I honestly couldn’t tell you because I’ve never even heard of rutabaga :)

      You can substitute it for red wine or just leave it out and use a little more broth.

      Kay on Nov 19, 2008 @ 9:05 am Reply
    25. 25

      Katrina, I was thinking the same thing. No celeriac here either, least, I don’t think so!

      Sara on Nov 19, 2008 @ 6:51 pm Reply

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