I've made many stews in my day, but I think I outdid myself today. I added as I went along, with what I had and it turned out wonderful. One of the best stews I ever ate. My family would agree, I thought they were going to lick their bowls...LOL!
1I made this in my 7 quart crock pot...I think it would fit a 5 - 6 quart as well.
In a dutch oven - add enough oil to cover bottom of pan. Turn heat to medium.
Add the flour to a plastic zip lock bag, along with season salt. Add beef to bag, making sure not to over crowd, so to get an even covering of flour. Place on a plate as you flour.
2Place enough beef in bottom of dutch oven and brown on all sides - do not over crowd. As they brown, add them to the bottom of your crock pot. Keep browning until all meat is used.
Salt and pepper your beef of desired.
3Now, place onions and garlic in the same pan as you browned the beef in. Do not remove any of the browned bits - they will add flavor. Add a little more oil if needed and I also added the scraps of beef I cut from the cubes, it adds more flavor. Once onion is removed from pan, discard scraps.
Brown the onions for just a few minutes - just until they begin to color.
4Place the onions and garlic on top of the brown beef.
Add the broth, Sherry, Worschestershire sauce, gravy master browning sauce and bouillon. Scrape any remaining browned bits from bottom of pan. Bring broth mixture to a boil and then set aside.
5Add the potatoes, carrots, celery and bay leaves atop the onions.
Pour the broth over everything. Place lid on pot and turn to high. I cooked mine on high for 3 hours, then turned to low for 2 hours. I added the corn in the 4th hour of cooking.
6Once meat and veggies are tender - if broth is not as thick as you like after stirring. I placed 1 tablespoon of corn starch in a small bowl with 1 tsp gravy master and a tablespoon of water. Mixed and stirred into the stew. Place lid back on and turn to high. Your crock pot may not cook as fast as mine, but mine thickened very quickly. I don't like a real thick gravy - so add as much thickener as you desire.
7Taste and add additional seasoning if you desire...I didn't add anything, it was perfect to us.
Ladle into bowls and enjoy with your favorite bread or muffins. I served mine with my Dill Gouda Buttermilk Muffins...was absolutely delicious dipped in those yummy juices.