Friday, September 18, 2009

Guiso de Ternera a la Asturiana: Asturian Beef Stew

I LOVE my cookbook The New Spanish Table. It groups recipes by category as well as region (i.e. tapas versus paella, Catalan versus Basque) and includes history, photos, cultural information and recipes by some of the most amazing contemporary chefs as well as little hole-in-the-wall bodegas. While tapas remain my favorite Spanish food to cook (be still, my heart), I aim to work my way through most of the cookbook's recipes. Spanish cuisine is still relatively "new" to most of the United States, and The New Spanish Table has many crowd pleasers (tortilla espanyola, patatas bravas, etc) but also offers the home cook opportunities to try more exotic dishes (bunny , rabbit, anyone?).

I purchased grass fed beef (in the form of stew meat) at the Coolidge Corner Farmer's Market and am excited to put it to good use. Asturian Beef Stew is the perfect recipe for a crisp autumn dinner: tender, white wine-braised beef, hearty white beans, turnips and rich collard greens. The following recipe is more or less from my cookbook. I had to alter some ingredients due to availability and not wanting to purchase 3 pounds of expensive (albeit delicious) beef. I'll update this post with photos and a detailed review this weekend!


2 lbs stew meat, cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks

Coast salt

Finely ground black pepper

3 tablespoons olive oil

4 ounces smoky bacon or pancetta, diced into small squares

1 medium Vidalia onion, diced

6 garlic cloves, minced

2 fat carrots (I used about 15 baby carrots and sliced them in half length-wise)

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

3/4 cup dry white wine

3 cups chicken stock

2 14 oz cans white Fava beans

1 14 oz can diced tomatoes

2 medium-sized turnips, peels and cut into 1 inch chunks (substitute potatoes if you don't like turnips)
4 cups chopped, VERY well rinsed and dried collard greens

Season beef with salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in large stew pot over medium-high heat. Add half of the beef to the pot and brown on all sides, about 10 minutes. Remove beef and set in a bowl. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to pot. Brown remaining half meat, and then transfer it to the bowl too.

Add remaining tablespoon oil to pot and add bacon. Reduce heat to medium and cook, stirring until bacon begins to render fat, about 2-3 minutes. Remove most of fat to use later. Add onion, garlic and carrots and turn heat back to medium-high and cook about 8 minutes so that vegetables soften and begin to brown. Add flour and stir for a few seconds. Add white wine and stir so that it combines with flour and add chicken stock. Bring to a boil, stirring to loosen any bits stuck to bottom of pot.

Add beef and tomatoes to stew pot. Bring back to boil and turn down to a simmer. Add salt and pepper to taste. Cook at this temperature for 2 hours, stirring occasionally so that nothing sticks to bottom of pot. Add beans, turnips and 1 cup water and cook until turnips are tender, about 35-50 minutes.

Heat up reserved bacon fat in saute pan over medium-high and add collard greens. Saute about 2-3 minutes. Remove from pan and add to stew pot. Taste stew, and add salt and pepper if necessary.

Remove stew from heat and let sit about 10 minutes before serving.


  1. Sounds like a great cookbook! This stew sounds super flavorful and comforting - yum!

  2. That's what I am hoping for, and it seems pretty healthy as well.

  3. That does sound like a cookbook I would love to go through! I love stew any day of the week too...

  4. Sounds like a good-old-traditional beef stew. Yummy!

  5. Heading to Spain in 2 days and I'm looking forward to trying the food.

    Now I'll have a cookbook to look for when I return.

  6. I am so jealous! I LOVE Spain (well, Barcelona, I have been there more than once but nowhere else, really). Where are you going to visit???

  7. Sounds delicious ! Thank you for sharing. Cheers !

  8. WOW! You always have such wonderful recipes...

  9. I must pick up that cookbook! sounds like they have so many wonderful recipes to try out

  10. Chef E & Jessie-I HIGHLY HIGHLY recommend this cookbook-it has all the pizazz you love to find in a cookbook with clear, QUALITY recipes!

  11. I love grass fed beef, it's just so good. The stew looks great!

  12. mmmm this sounds and looks wonderful for when the weather starts cooling down here (still 100 degrees). I love cookbooks like that! I love my 'splendid table' filled with ethnic Italian dishes, it's so neat to read them :) thanks for visiting my blog!

  13. Ditto, EatingRD... Can't wait for the cold!!

  14. Yum, I am a fan of any stew meat. This looks wonderful.

  15. This beef stew sounds terrific! Great recipe!

  16. Gracias por las palabras tan agradables! Siempre me alegro al leer un comentario asi :)


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