Fall camping recipe – Vancouver Island – Beef Stew

As we say good bye to the warmer weather and welcome the fall, its time to crack out one of my favourite recipes for this time of year – a classic Irish beef stew, or vegetable stew depending on your preference.

Personally I prefer making this onsite over the course of the day, we tend to start it over a fire at lunchtime and then add ingredients over the afternoon and let it simmer to perfection. Ready to eat for dinnertime.

History:

This is a twist on the traditional recipes that you would have found. The history of stew dates back to ancient times and the worlds oldest evidence of stew was found in Japan apparently. The Irish stew was traditionally made with mutton and potatoes or other roof vegetables, however I prefer to use beef. I personally cook potatoes separately as I find they breakdown when boiled for a long time.

Recipe: (For a large cast iron pot)

  • 1kg stewing beef
  • 2 large onions (Chopped)
  • 2-4 cloves garlic
  • 4 carrots (Peeled and chopped)
  • 8-10 mushrooms (chopped)
  • 1/2 pack of bacon (Save the rest for breakfast)
  • Tomato Paste (small can)
  • 1 can Guinness
  • 2 cups of beef stock
  • Thyme and bay leaves

Method:

I prefer to cook on a fire, but if you prefer using the stove either works well. You need a low and consistent heat for the next few hours.

  1. Cut the onions and garlic and gently fry them in olive oil.
  2. Brown the meat
  3. Add the bacon once the meat has browned
  4. Add the Thyme and Bay leaves
  5. Once the bacon starts to release the fat add the chopped carrots
  6. Salt and pepper to taste
  7. Add the stock and Guinness
  8. Add the tomato paste
  9. Add the mushrooms
  10. Allow to simmer for 2-3 hours depending on heat
  11. Simmer uncovered for the last 30 minutes once the sauce has reduced and begins to thicken.
  12. You may prefer to thicken the sauce with a bit of flour if you have.

Once your beef stew is cooked, enjoy with a thick piece of bread and a nice cold beer.

You can also serve with boiled or mashed potatoes.

So if you are taking out one of our Overland camping vehicles for rental this fall, ask us for our pre-stocked ingredients and we can make sure you have everything you need to make this delicious recipe on your travels.