Sadly, I did walk away from spending two hours in the same room as Mr. Oliver wondering. I'm not sure what I was wondering, but I am pretty sure the evening could have been much better. Should I point fingers at an audience that asked insanely stupid questions, like - "How do you do your hair, Jamie?" Or at a host that seemingly had not much more planned for the evening than to answer question after question from an audience more interested in his looks than his cooks. (I really should stop rhyming!)
Okay, okay... so it was really super cool to see him live... stupidity and all, Thursday will still be a day I'll always remember. And most importantly Jamie did kick me into cooking mode again, with a perfectly cooked steak which even I could smell and drool over far, far away from the stage, spanked with rosemary (yes, that would be spanked - ask me later) and tossed in fresh herbs and the ever important olive oil.
No later than Friday did I crack open a nice bottle of red, and before you could sing the Mary Poppins theme song, I had a gorgeous stew simmering away. So Jamie, you still rock. Everyone has off days, I suppose you can, too.
I am sure you've guessed it by now, there is no photo in my possession of Jamie and me, just a few fuzzy 'pics', this one being the best. (Isn't that sad?)
Red Wine Beef Stew with Potatoes & Rosemary
Adapted from Dave Lieberman
2 pounds beef chuck, 1-inch cubes
3 tbsp butter
4 carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise and cut into 1-inch pieces
3 small onions, diced
2 tbsp all purpose flour
2 cups white mushrooms
900 ml low sodium beef broth
2 cups red wine
1 cup canned crushed tomatoes
1 6-inch sprig of fresh rosemary
2 medium russet potatoes, peeled, 1-inch chunks
2 handfuls green and/or yellow beans, ends trimmed
2 tbsp fresh chopped parsley
Season the beef lightly with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. Heat 2 tbsp of butter in a large, heavy pot over high heat. As soon as the butter starts to brown, add half the beef. Brown beef on all sides then remove from pot to a bowl. Add 1 tbsp of butter and brown remaining beef. Remove from pot also.
Toss carrots and onions into the pot, adjust the heat to medium. Cook until the onions start to turn translucent, about 5 minutes. Stir in the flour and stir until it has been worked into the veggies and you can't see it anymore.
Now add the beef broth, red wine, crushed tomatoes and toss in whole mushrooms and sprig of rosemary. Stir the beef back into the pot and bring to a boil.
Turn down the heat to a gentle simmer. Partially cover the pot and simmer for 50 minutes. Stir occasionally.
After 50 minutes, add the potatoes and simmer another 45 minutes, stirring once in a while.
Lastly, add the beans and allow them to heat through.
Serve with fresh parsley.