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Barbecue Beef Stew

barbecuebeefstew.jpg

Barbecue beef:

Stew:

This process takes place over two days, so be sure to begin preparing the beef the day before you cook the actual stew.

Preheat oven to 250 degrees F. In a large cast iron skillet or dutch oven over medium heat, brown the stew meat; drain and set aside in a separate enamel or glass baking dish. Mix the barbecue sauce in with the beef. Cover the baking dish (aluminum foil is fine if your baking dish doesn't have a cover), place into oven, braise for four hours at 250 degrees.

After four hours, remove your baking dish from the oven and cool it on your counter or stovetop; then place the entire dish in your refrigerator overnight, still covered. This will allow the meat to solidify – and that's exactly what is supposed to happen.

The next day, preheat your oven to 350 degrees F. In a heavy cooking pot (such as an enameled dutch oven), combine the tomatoes, water, corn starch, broth, beef bouillon, sugar, salt and pepper. Mix together the stew ingredients. Chop up your carrots, celery, potatoes, onion, and bread into bite-sized (about 1 inch) cubes; add them to the pot as you chop them up. Take the beef out of the refrigerator and let it sit on your counter, still covered – but don't add it to the stew yet. Cover the pot and cook the vegetables and stew in the oven for 1 hour. After 1 hour, add the beef to the pot by placing it on top of the stew and spreading it on top – but don't mix it into the stew. Cover the pot and place it back in the oven at 350 degrees F for one more hour. This will thaw out the beef, moisten it, and let it settle into the stew; that's why you don't have to mix it in at first.

After the stew has cooked for another hour, take the pot out of the oven and place it on your stovetop. Now you can stir the beef in with the stew. Serve in bowls with bread or cornbread (or both) on the side.