Feb 272014

My favorite beef stew recipe - I took this photo when there was only one bowl left, which had mostly carrots and very little meat in it :)This is the best beef stew that I have ever had…EVER! The red wine was the “key ingredient”. It made the soupy broth so delicious, I could have just eaten the broth with bread and butter….Yum!

I took this photo a little too late. There was only one bowl left, which had mostly carrots and very little meat in it 🙂

Normally, I make beef stew with the leftovers from my pot roast. I have never used wine in my pot roast or stew. However, this was so good I will add the wine to the pot roast next time.

This recipe yielded 6 servings.


  • 2-3 lbs. stew meat or chuck roast, cut into 1-1/2 inch pieces
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 2 yellow onions
  • 1/4 cup flour
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup red wine (I used Cabernet Sauvignon)
  • 2 15 oz. cans beef broth
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1/2 tsp rosemary
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 lb. baby carrots, or several whole carrots cut into 1-inch slices
  • 2 stalks celery, cut into 1-inch slices
  • 3-4 medium russet potatoes, or 6-8 small red potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
  • fresh parsley for garnish


  1. On medium-high heat, add the vegetable oil to a large dutch oven or heavy pot with a lid.
  2. Add beef and brown well on all sides. Add salt and pepper as the beef browns. Remove beef and set aside.
  3. Add onions and sauté for 5 minutes, until translucent.
  4. Reduce heat to medium-low, add the flour and stir for two minutes.
  5. Add the minced garlic and cook for one minute.
  6. Add wine and de-glaze the pan, scraping brown bits on the bottom. Let wine thicken and simmer for five more minutes.
  7. Return beef to pot and add broth, bay leaf, rosemary and thyme.
  8. Add carrots and celery, and simmer covered for two hours, or until the meat and vegetables are tender to your liking. I like my carrots and celery soft, and the meat fork tender. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  9. Meanwhile, either add potatoes to stew or boil separately. I like serving white potatoes, not soaked in stew.
  10. Preheat oven if you are making dinner rolls.
  11. Throw some biscuits in the oven while the stew sits for approximately 15 minutes before serving. Garnish with parsley.

This is similar to My Mother’s Beef Tips and Gravy, without the vegetables. Just serve over wide noodles.

Jun 262013

Cheesy Spanish Rice RecipeI made this earlier today because I wasn’t sure exactly how long it would take to make it. It came out so good I couldn’t stop munching on it. I added the cheese later when I reheated it, and it was even better. But if you want to save some calories, it tastes great without the cheese. I served this with beef burritos and enchiladas.

I’m usually terrible when it comes to cooking rice. It always comes out too mushy. This, however, is tender and moist, not mushy.

Serve on the side with burritos, enchiladas, fajitas, or tacos. If you want to make a full dinner out of it, add ground beef or cooked chicken, and corn or baby peas. Continue reading »

Jun 162013

I just tried this quick and easy marinade for tonight’s grilled sirloin tip steaks, also known as New England flap steak. I didn’t have as much time, so they marinated for about 4 hours instead of overnight. The longer they marinate the better.

As a side note, we usually grill more tender steaks, such as rib eyes or NY strips, or even top sirloin steaks that do not need to be marinated. Sirloin tips, however, are a different cut of meat, not to be confused with top sirloin steaks, which are quite tender. The sirloin tip is part of the round, which is a lean and tougher cut, similar to eye of the round and swiss steak. I like to buy the sirloin tip roasts and slice them into 3/4″ steaks. They are quite flavorful and easier on the budget, as well. This was the manager’s special, which were still quite fresh, and about $3.99 a pound. Continue reading »

Apr 182013

I went shopping on Saturday and I went a bit overboard. I’m not always able to buy much more than chicken and ground beef, but this time I picked up some really nice finds in the meat and seafood departments, thanks to the weekly sales and manager’s specials at Kroger.

So, here’s a list of meat that I purchased:

    2 Sirloin Tips, approx. 4 lbs. each – on sale (To be used for steaks, pot roast, beef tips, stew)
    1 Small sirloin tip (manager’s special)
    2-1/2 lb. chuck roast (another manager’s special)
    14 thin boneless pork loin chops (family size package for 2 nights)
    14 whole chicken wings (I split them for Buffalo wings)
    2 lbs ground beef (plus I already had 2-3 lbs. in the freezer)
    2 racks of pork back ribs – on sale
    1-1/2 lbs fresh cod fish filets – on sale
    10 sweet Italian sausage links (2 nights) – Kroger brand
    Beef hot dogs – Ball Park on sale

I didn’t buy chicken because I have a freezer full.

Following is a draft of meals that I will make in the next two weeks, plus the links to the recipes that I used/will use:

  1. My Mother’s Pork Loin Chops Simmered in Beef Gravy – http://susans-musings.com/my-mothers-pork-loin-chops-simmered-in-beef-gravy
    This one of my family’s favorites. I make these every other week for my son. When I say we’re having pork chops, he asks if they’re his pork chops or dad’s, who prefers my From Stove to Oven Baked Pork Chops. I like them both.

Continue reading »

Jan 142013

My husband was born and raised in Cincinnati, and he makes his mom’s recipe for chili (may she rest in peace). Although he is from Cincinnati, this chili is somewhat different than most of the recipes I’ve found for Cincinnati chili, or any chili for that matter. I sometimes wonder if he left out some of the ingredients since it was never written down (that I know of), but it is delicious just the way it is.

This is the recipe that we eat most often, since my husband enjoys making it 🙂 Continue reading »

Oct 022012

FREE Farmhouse Kitchen Recipes: Cracking Crock-Pot Meals: (Stews, casseroles and other Delicious Slow Cooker Recipes)

FREE Farmhouse Kitchen Recipes: Cracking Crock-Pot Meals: (Stews, casseroles and other Delicious Slow Cooker Recipes)
By F. A. Paris
[Kindle Edition]
Publication Date: September 28, 2012
Length: 73 pages

With Autumn upon us, and Winter creeping up, the weather is perfect for some heart-warming scents that permeate the home while the most sensational meals slow cook all day long. Continue reading »

Nov 012011

Pot Roast with Onion GravyThis chuck roast recipe is by far the best I have ever had. What makes this so easy is that the beginning high temperature sears the meat right in the roasting pan without using the stove top, and the delicious gravy practically makes itself while the meat is roasting.

Originally, I made this pot roast without the vegetables in the pot. I served it with mashed potatoes, green beans and dinner rolls. However, in the photo on the left I added baby carrots and celery to the pot, and served it with boiled potatoes. (See below for an updated version, which includes cooking a frozen chuck roast! (9/28/13)

3-4 lbs chuck roast
1 tablespoon brown sugar
salt and pepper for rub
1 large onion, peeled, whole or quartered

5 cups water
1/2 cup flour
1 1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper

Rub all sides of roast with salt, pepper, and brown sugar.
Place the meat into a roasting pan, uncovered.
Roast at 450 degrees for 15 minutes, turn roast over and roast for another 15 minutes. Remove from pan and put aside.

Chuck RoastThis is my new lasagna pan, and it’s great for pot roast – I love it!

In roasting pan, whisk together 5 cups of water, flour, 1 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. Place roast back in roasting pan and pour some of the water mixture on top. Add onion. Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees and roast for 3 hours (preferred method), or at 350 degrees for 2 hours, turning roast once at the halfway point of the cooking time. Unless the roast is completely covered with water/gravy, I would suggest covering the pan at this point to avoid the top from drying out.

Chop the onion into the gravy before serving. The kids don’t like onions, so I reserved some of the gravy without them.

Serve with mashed potatoes, biscuits and your choice of vegetable.

This time, I added baby carrots and celery to the roasting pan in the beginning, after browning the roast, and served with mashed potatoes.

Everyone raved about it, but I’d still prefer to cook it without the vegetables. Also, the gravy cooked out more than I would have liked. I placed the roasting pan over two burners and whisked in more water and flour. Keep an eye on the gravy and add more water or beef broth an hour before it’s done if it cooks out too much. You want at least two cups of gravy when finished.

Printable recipe without images:


Have you ever cooked a FROZEN roast?

This was one of those days when I was all prepared to season my chuck roast and sear it in the oven. Except for one thing. It was still FROZEN SOLID!! I was thinking that the roast was sitting in my refrigerator and completely thawed out. I had forgotten that it was only last night when I took it out of the freezer and placed it in the refrigerator. My fridge runs cold, so it would normally take a few days to thaw out a 4-lb. roast. Not only was the roast frozen, but I got a late start. It was almost 2 PM. I still had a good four to five hours before dinner, so I should have enough time (I hope). Unfortunately, there have been times when my roast would seem to cook all day and just never be tender enough. It has taken as much as five hours before. You can’t always be sure with cheaper cuts of meat.

I quickly went to the Internet to see how to cook a frozen chuck roast. To my surprise, I found many responses. The one I chose was where a woman seasoned and placed the roast in a 450 degree oven, which is what I always do at first, anyway. She continued to roast at the high temperature for several hours, but she was cooking a 10-12 lb. shoulder roast, and my chuck roast was just less than 4 lbs.

Since it was frozen, I skipped the rub in the beginning. I put it in the oven at 2:15 Pm. After 15 minutes on each side at 450, I stuck a fork in it and it was completely defrosted! I figured it had only been 45 minutes since I began to prep, so I really hadn’t lost that much time. I removed the browned meat and set it aside. I then added the salt, pepper and brown sugar to both sides.

In the roasting pan, I whisked together the water, flour, 1 1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper. I placed the roast back in the roasting pan and scooped some of the water mixture on top. I then added the onion.

This time, I decided to add baby carrots and celery to the pot. I lowered the oven to 350 and set the timer for 90 minutes. It was now 2:45 PM, so it looked like it would be done in time for dinner (I had figured dinner to be between 6 and 7 at the latest). I will see how far along it is and decide whether to continue at that temp. I just don’t want the roast to dry out. Even though it’s sitting in five cups of water, it will evaporate and I need to keep an eye on it.

4:15 PM. Internal temperature was 150F, but since it’s a chuck roast it still has a ways to go before it’s tender enough. I need to be able to cut it with a fork. The tops of the meat and veggies are singed, so I gave it a good stir, turned the meat, and covered it with foil. Back in the oven for another hour or so.

5:30 PM. Checked pot roast for tenderness. Will wait until 6 PM to start potatoes.

6:00 PM. Peeled and quartered russet potatoes, and boiled in a separate pot for 20 minutes.

6:30 PM. Removed from oven and placed chuck roast on large platter, surrounded with potatoes, carrots, onions and celery. Served with gravy and warm dinner rolls.

Chalk this one up to another wonderful Sunday dinner.

Family Rating: Five Smileys

Bon appétit!

Oct 062011

Not Meat Loafanother meat loaf recipe, you say? Well, let’s add just one more to your collection. This recipe is the very last meat loaf recipe that I will ever try. There is no reason to ever look for another meat loaf recipe. This is, hands down, the best meat loaf I have ever made!

I admit it, I like simple and easy meals that I can defrost and put in the oven without much fuss. It’s been a couple of years since I made this recipe. In fact, I forgot how good it was until I made it again the other day. Most of the time, when I’m shopping I’ll grab a Stoeffer’s frozen meatloaf in gravy entree. It was always just enough for four of us, with no leftovers. It’s so easy to make, with no preservatives, gravy included, and quite tasty. I served it with mashed potatoes and vegetable, rolls and butter. However, it isn’t as good as homemade and I never had any leftovers. I love leftover meat loaf sandwiches.
Continue reading »

Sep 052011

Here’s what’s for dinner this week:

    Meal Plan for Week 9/4/11 – 9/10/11

  • Sunday – Chicken Ala King served over rice
  • Monday – Leftovers – Steak, chicken ala king, baked chicken strips with hot sauce
  • Tuesday – Hot dogs, mac & cheese, and My Mother’s Corn Chowder – Click for Recipe
  • Wednesday – Baked chicken pieces, mashed potatoes w/gravy, green beans
  • Thursday – Open House tonight, maybe McDonald’s after
  • Friday – Oven Baked Buffalo Chicken Wings – Click for Recipe
  • Saturday – Top sirloin steak, grilled, with baked potatoes and tossed salad

Bon appétit!