On a cold, grey afternoon, what's warmer than homemade soup or stew and bread? Friday night, I wanted the warm aroma of beef stew throughout my kitchen. Since only half of the family is home, I only made a half sized batch of stew. By next Saturday, I'll have all but one back (hooray!), and the oldest son comes home for a week on the 21st! My house will be full and joyous!
MARJIE'S BEEF STEW
2 lbs. steak, cut into small cubes
1 large onion, cut into small pieces
1 tbsp oil
Brown steak & onion in oil.
12 cups water
2 tbsp. tomato paste.
salt to taste
2 large or 4 small potatoes, with skin, grated
Stir the tomato paste into the beef. Add water & potato; bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer for 3 hours or so. The potatoes will by and large dissolve, thickening the broth
1 large sweet potato, cut into bites
2 carrots, sliced
4 ribs celery, sliced
2 tomatoes, diced
1/2 cup barley
Stir these in; cook for another 30 to 60 minutes, or until tender. Add 1/2 cup spinach (fresh or frozen) and 1/4 cup chopped parsley. Simmer another 10 minutes. Add freshly ground pepper to taste and serve with bread.
BAKING POWDER DROP BISCUITS
4 cups flour
1/4 cup sugar
1-1/2 tsp. salt
2 tbsp baking powder
1 cup milk
Blend all ingredients. Bake 10 to 12 minutes at 425. Makes about 30.
On another note, my oldest daughter called from Wyoming last week. She has a 1990 Benz, with which I personally have a love-hate relationship. It rides worse than my Suburban, and the climate control is tempermental at BEST, but someone did ram her when she was 16 and she walked away unscathed. When she was 18, she called me in a panic because her car's gauges had gone haywire 4 miles from our house, then it died in the middle of the street. Before I could get there with 2 of her brothers to push the car out of the street, a nice man had parked his pickup truck on the yellow line, effectively blocking both lanes, and pushed her car into a parking lot. I told her it was the alternator, and we waited for AAA to haul it away. Well, about 2 weeks ago, the same thing happened, so she went to Advanced Auto and bought an alternator. With help from the Chilton's book I had purchased for her (so she could check oil and fuses), and with her roommates jacking up her car, disconnecting the battery and removing the giant serpentine belt for her, SHE CHANGED HER OWN ALTERNATOR!!!! Now that's a great girl for you!