Based on an old-fashioned recipe for Swedish Kalops, this is such a quick and easy winter stew recipe, just chunks of beef slow-cooked with onions and cranberry, creating melt-in-your-mouth tender bites of meat. Perfect for cold winter nights. Simple enough for a weeknight supper but special enough for company too.
As the holiday season winds down, turn to simple foods that can be prepared in a few minutes and then forgotten until serving time. Whether cooked ahead for a weeknight supper or simmered stovetop for Sunday dinner, Swedish Kalops fit the bill for easy, filling winter fare.
Swedish cookbooks offer dozens of traditional recipes for Kalops, sometimes anglicized to Callops. Centuries ago, the meat and gravy mixture was served on sailing ships so most recipes call for a generous quantity of allspice or cloves to mask the taste of spoiled meat on long voyages.
This delicious variation creates morsels of tender meat in a fruit-sweetened gravy that to my taste is decidedly addictive.
For a traditional meal, serve the stew with boiled potatoes (either plain or tossed with a little butter and fresh dill), pickled beets and a green salad.
QUICK SUPPER RECIPE:
BEEF STEW with CRANBERRIES
Time to table: 2 hours
Makes 6 cups
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup flour
- 1 teaspoon table salt
- 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
- 2 pounds beef stew meat
- 2 medium onions, chopped (about 2 cups)
- 2 bay leaves
- 16 ounces canned whole-cranberry sauce
- 1/2 - 1 cup water, depending on how much gravy is wanted
Heat the oil in a large, heavy Dutch oven until shimmery. Meanwhile, mix the flour, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add the meat pieces and dredge with the flour mixture until lightly coated. Add the meat to the hot oil and cook the meat until it is brown on all sides. Top with remaining ingredients and stir.
STOVETOP Cover and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for at least 90 minutes until meat becomes tender.
OVEN Cover and cook at 200F/100C for 2 hours or until meat becomes tender.
Remove bay leaves before serving.
ALANNA's TIPS Not into canned cranberry? Use Homemade Whole Cranberry Sauce for the Slow Cooker.
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