Five-Spice Beef Stew
2 pounds boneless beef bottom round, trimmed and cut into 2-inch chunks
2 tablespoons canola or vegetable oil
4 cups low-sodium beef broth
4 medium shallots, quartered
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 2-inch piece ginger, finely chopped
1 teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder
3 star anise pods
1 small cinnamon stick
2 tablespoons tomato paste
12 ounces medium carrots (about 3), peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
12 ounces medium parsnips (about 3), peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 small purple-topped turnips, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 (15-ounce) can crushed tomatoes
1 large bunch spinach, thick stems discarded
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 tablespoon lime juice
Cilantro and thinly sliced red chile, for topping
- Preheat the oven to 325°F.
- Season the beef with a ½ teaspoon each of salt and pepper.
- In a large, thick-walled cooking pot (Dutch oven), heat 1 tablespoon oil on medium heat.
- Cook the beef in batches, 6-8 minutes, until browned. Then put in a bowl.
- Mix ½ cup broth into the pot, scraping out browned bits, 1 minute. Pour juices into the bowl with the beef.
- Turn down the heat to medium. Add 1 tablespoon oil to the pot with the shallots. Cook while occasionally stirring, until it is golden brown, 3-4 minutes.
- Stir in garlic, ginger, five-spice powder, star anise, and cinnamon. Cook, 2 minutes.
- Stir in tomato paste. Cook, 1 minute.
- Put the beef and the juices in the pot with carrots, parsnips, turnips, tomatoes, and the rest of the broth (3½ cups). Boil then cover; bake until the beef is tender, 1½-2 hours.
- Take out of the oven. Throw away the star anise and cinnamon. Mix in spinach, fish sauce, and lime juice.
- Top with cilantro and chile. Serve.
Recipe adapted from Good Housekeeping[i]
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