Winter Stew

Prep time: 
 Cook time: 
 Total time: 
60 minutes
Winter Stew

Isn't it amazing that stew, one of the world's oldest comfort foods, can be made from just two ingredients simmered in a liquid? While that is the bare-bones recipe, making a really soul-satisfying stew requires a few more ingredients, maybe even one that is a little unexpected. That's where my Sauerkraut comes in. Its tang and texture are the perfect complement to the sweetness of the vegetables. Add a little more sauerkraut on top for garnish and you've got a stew that will chase the chill from any winter night.


  • 1 pound stew meat, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 1-2 tbsp flour
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 carrots, sliced into 1/2 inch
  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, sliced 1/4 inch
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 2 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1 quart beef stock
  • 2 cups Bubbies Sauerkraut + ½ cup brine
  • 1 small sweet potato, cut into ½-inch chunks
  • 2 small red potatoes, cut into ½-inch chunks
  • ½ pound mushrooms, quartered
  • 2 cups pearl onions, skins removed. (Place onions in boiling water for 3-5 minutes, then peel off skins)
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 sprigs of thyme, stemmed
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Prepare meat: salt, pepper, and dust with flour to coat all sides.
  2. Put olive oil in a dutch oven over medium heat.
  3. Add meat in two batches, and brown on all sides. Set aside in a bowl.
  4. Add more olive oil to the same pan, and sauté onion, carrots, garlic, and celery with a pinch of salt and pepper for 3-5 minutes, stirring often.
  5. Add red wine and deglaze, scraping bits from bottom of the pan, until wine is reduced by half.
  6. Add tomato paste and stir until dissolved, then add beef stock, 1/2 cup sauerkraut brine, potatoes, mushrooms, pearl onions, bay leaves, thyme and the meat - cover and cook over a low simmer for 20-25 minutes.
  7. If stew is too thick, add more stock; if it’s too thin, mix 1-2 tablespoons flour with 1/4 cup warm stock until dissolved, add to stew and mix well.
  8. Continue to cook on low for 15 more minutes until vegetables are done and flavors are blended. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary.
  9. Garnish each bowl with a heaping tablespoon of Bubbies Sauerkraut.
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