We’re off to a New Year!
Are you a stay at home and hang in your stretchy pants or go out in a new outfit type of New Year’s person? So far we have always gone out but each year gets a little calmer which I have really come to enjoy. We’ll see what 2015 hold us for us, but I have a feeling that it will involve my favorite pair of black pants…they are super stretchy.
So what’s your New Year’s resolution? I am hearing a lot of eating healthier/exercising more which seems to be a popular one. According to the radio hosts the other day, people need to actually come up with a measurable, achievable goal versus a broad statement. For example, lose 10 pounds in 3 months, or eat healthy 5 days a week, or eat at least 3 cups of vegetables a day, or read 1 book a month. I’m not necessarily the “I’m going to eat healthier” type of person because I believe in eating what you want and crave but in moderation. I also happen to enjoy all types of foods like veggies, fruits, whole grains, chocolate, ice cream, and sugar so I already have a pretty well-balanced diet…most of the time. 😉
However, I do need to ramp up the exercise…like now, right this minute, right this second. So here we go my friends – my New Year’s resolution is (drum roll please!!!) walk on the treadmill at least 4 days a week for 30 minutes. Wahoo!!! I know it’s a slightly lame but I am not a runner (more of the elliptical type) so I figured this would be an achievable goal that is not currently part of my weekly routine, AND since we purchased a brand new treadmill that’s sitting in our basement, I figured I should probably use it to get our moneys worth. I would also love to read 1 book a month, but right now I am addicted to Vampire Diaries and there’s like 5 seasons to catch up on so…there’s always 2015 for the book thing. 😉
Ok, now that I have committed to my New Year’s resolution to all of you…wish me luck…let’s talk about this recipe I have for you today. If your New Year’s resolution is to eat healthier, this is a great recipe to start with. Yes, there’s beef in it but you don’t have to use it. This soup has SO.MUCH.FLAVOR. I could literally drink the broth out of a cup.
Here are all those yummy healthy vegetables that we were talking about earlier. Saute them up until they are soft and slightly browned. Browning or caramelizing helps develop flavor so make sure you wait until the veggies are nice and golden. Then all you do is add the other ingredients and wait. Super easy, one pot meal, that’s hearty and healthy. Aaaaamen!
- 2.5 pounds stew meat (can also get a chuck roast and cut into cubes yourself)
- 1 cup carrots, chopped (about 4 carrots)
- 1 cup celery, chopped (about 4 celery sticks)
- 8 ounces sliced mushrooms
- 1 medium white onion, chopped
- 5 garlic cloves, minced
- ¼ cup red wine (optional)
- 2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- 32 ounces low sodium beef stock (if you can't get low-sodium, taste test before adding extra salt)
- 16 ounces low sodium vegetable stock (if you can't get low-sodium, taste test before adding extra salt)
- 1 large bay leaf
- 1 teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon pepper
- 5-6 sprigs of fresh thyme (add the entire stem then remove after cooking)
- 1 teaspoon dried parsley
- 3-4 tablespoons olive oil
- Parmesan cheese for serving
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
- Heat 3 tablespoons olive oil in a large pot over medium high heat. Add half of the cubed stew meat and cook until all sides are seared, the beef will still be rare on the inside. Remove and set aside. Repeat with the other half of meat. If you cook it all at once, it won't sear because the pot will be too crowded.
- To the same pot, add chopped carrots, celery, mushrooms and onion, saute for 3 minutes then add garlic. Continue to saute until vegetables are slightly softened and browned.
- Add the rest of ingredients and seared beef and stir. Taste for salt and pepper - add more as needed. Place lid on top and cook for 3 hours in oven.
- This can also be cooked in a slow cooker. Transfer the the soup to your slow cooker and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 3-4 hours.
- Remove thyme stems and bay leaf before serving. Serve with parmesan cheese if desired.
Source: Stuck on Sweet