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Well, we’re still here. I guess the Mayan calendar wasn’t a prediction. It seems it just ran out. I don’t put much stock in prophesies. Anyway, as promised, here’s my recipe for a meat/veggie dish in a slow cooker that provides a lot of food and isn’t overly pricey.

The meat cost all of $4.12 which comes to about $1.00 per meal since Blue got to nibble (oh, who am I kidding?) wolf some of it down. Please adjust to your preferences. Oh, and note the extra additions to the “next day” in the text down below.

You’ll notice the large spaces between the ingredients which I find annoying. I didn’t purposely double space, it just did it. If anyone knows how to tighten the lines up so they look less “airy” please let me know. Thank you in advance!

For those of you who now see the single spacing on the ingredients below in the recipe, this is what I was talking about:

“rough chop celery

rough chop carrots

1 large or 2 sm. rough chop onions” …annoying right?

The big thank you goes to I heart food (nice blog by the way!) for giving me a SUPER simple answer! This lovely person lives in Australia. The answer for anyone else who finds spacing challenging is this:  in the upper right corner of your composing window are two tabs “Visual” and “Text”. By switching to  Text, you can go into your copy and delete the spacing. Then click on Visual to see the results. Brilliant! Thank you so very much!!

BRAISED BEEF SHANKS AND VEGGIES

2 rough chop carrots
2 rough chop celery
1 large or 2 sm. rough chop onions
2 small red rose or 1 large new potato(s), skin on, cut into 3/4″ pieces
1.66 pounds of cross-cut beef shanks about 1 – 1 1/4″ thick
1.5  c. red wine
2 T. olive oil
3-4 cloves chopped garlic
1 t. balsamic vinegar
1 t. thyme
1 t. marjoram
2 T dijon-style country mustard
Flour for dredging
Salt & Pepper

Rinse shanks and pat dry. Bring beef to room temperature. Mix flour, salt & pepper together on a dinner plate. Set aside.

My crock pot has 4 settings:  off, high, low and warm. It was cheap and so I used a crock pot liner because the 4 qt. red Rival pot is hard to clean.

Toss in carrots, celery, onions, potato into pot.

Dredge the beef on all sides in flour mix and lay in one layer on veggies.

Mix the wine, oil, balsamic, garlic, thyme, marjoram and mustard together and pour over shanks.

Put lid on snuggly if using a liner and then turn to high for 2 1/2 hours. Set pot to low for 2 more hours.

Since I got a late start on this, I turned the cooker off and let it cool. Then lifted the liner and contents out of crockery and into a dutch oven with lid. I held the bag in place with the lid.  I put it in the fridge overnight. Love the pot liners!

Next morning I took the Dutch oven out of the fridge, spooned the fat off the top and let sit on counter to come to room temperature.

Additions:  Mix 1 t. anchovy paste, 1 t. soy sauce, 3 T. tomato paste in a tube and 1/4 c. red wine in a bowl. Whisk together. Pour into slow cooker bag while it sat in the Dutch oven.

Carefully, I lifted the bag out and mixed it all together by gently squishing it about. Then set it all back into crock pot, rearranging things so it all fit, put the lid on and turned it to high for one hour. After that hour I turned the temperature to low for 3 hours.

Serve over egg noodles, polenta or with mashed potatoes or since it has potatoes, just all by itself. YUM!

This yielded two dinners, two lunches plus dog treats and was totally delicious. The only thing I didn’t like was that the vegetables were a bit over-cooked. Next time I might add the veggies half way through even though I know removing the lid means it adds another 20 minutes or so to the cooking time.

Having them on top of the meat means they wouldn’t be submerged in the red wine as much. Having the meat on the bottom might lessen the cooking time. But then what do I know about crock pots and slow cookers? 🙂 If you cook this all in one day, you’ll have to adjust your cooking times. I think I’d still add the extras that I put in the next day, midway through the cooking. Honestly don’t know if it’d really matter though vs. throwing them in at the beginning (she says, shrugging her shoulders).

It really was an amazingly tasty batch though! I haven’t eaten beef for almost a year now, so I forgot how nice a pot of stew was on a cold day. And I was so proud of myself for dreaming this up and finally actually having it turn out! 🙂 Yum.

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