Meatball Stew

Comfort food at its best.

1 And 3/4 Pounds Of 85% Ground Beef

A Cup And A Tablespoon Of Diced Spanish Onion, Divided

Three Minced Garlic Cloves, Divided 

Three Whole Italian Parsley Stalks

Two Tablespoons Of Finely Chopped Italian Parsley

A Beaten Egg

1/4 Cup Of Warm Water

A Cup Of Panko Breadcrumbs

1/4 Cup Of Flour

1 1/2 Tablespoons Of Tomato Paste

A Bay Leaf

Four Teaspoons Of Sea Salt, Divided

Two Teaspoons Of Ground Black Pepper, Divided

A Rosemary Stalk

Two Thyme Stalks

Eight Yukon Gold Potatoes Peeled And Cut Into About One Inch Cubes

A Pound Of Whole Mushrooms

12 Ounces Of Green Beans Cut Into About One Inch Long Pieces

28 Ounces Of Chicken Stock

1 1/2 Cups Of Dry Red Wine

A Diced Celery Stalk  

Three Whole Carrots Cut Into About One Inch Pieces

Two Tablespoons And A Teaspoon Of Olive Oil, Divided

Add a teaspoon of olive oil, a minced garlic clove, a tablespoon of Spanish onion, a pinch of sea salt, and a pinch of black pepper to a small saute pan. Cook on medium low heat stirring occasionally for four minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.

Into a mixing bowl, add the ground beef, the cooked garlic, the cooked onion, the chopped parsley, the breadcrumbs, the egg, the warm water, a teaspoon of sea salt, and a 1/2 teaspoon of ground black pepper. Mix well with your hands until all of the ingredients are well incorporated. Form the mixture into meatballs (about the size of golf balls). Roll the meatballs in the flour to lightly coat them.

Into a Dutch oven, add two tablespoons of olive oil. Put the Dutch oven on medium high heat for four minutes. Add the meatballs and saute them for five minutes until the meatballs on brown on all sides. Remove the meatballs to a plate. Remove all but one tablespoon of the grease that has been rendered.

Put the pot back on medium high heat. Add about a cup of the carrots, a cup of the Spanish onions, two minced garlic cloves, the celery, two teaspoons of sea salt, and a teaspoon of black pepper. Cook for four minutes while scraping the bottom of pot to loosen the brown bits that have accumulated. Add the red wine and cook for six minutes. Continue to scrape the bottom of the Dutch oven until all of the brown bits have been lifted. Add the tomato paste and stir to incorporate the paste into the red wine. Add the mushrooms and stir again. Add the meatballs back into the pot along with the chicken stock. Bring the mixture to a boil. After it begins to boil, turn the heat down to low. Tie the parsley stalks, the thyme stalks, and the rosemary stalk into a bundle with butcher’s twine. Drop the herb bundle into the pot. Add the bay leaf to the pot. Simmer with the lid 3/4 of the way on for 1 and 1/2 hours.

After 1 and 1/2 hours, remove the herb bundle. Skim off any of the excess grease that accumulates on the surface. Taste and add more sea salt and ground black pepper, as needed. Add the rest of the carrots, the green beans, and the potatoes to the pot. Cover the Dutch oven all the way and simmer for another 1 and 1/2 hours.

The stew is done when the potatoes and carrots are tender when pierced with a fork (fork tender). Turn off the heat. Taste and add more sea salt and ground black pepper, as needed.    

Serve on top of buttered noodles.