Beefless Stew

Beefless Stew 500x495

Recipe by Cathy Fisher of Cathy teaches at the McDougall Program and TrueNorth Health Center (both in Santa Rosa, CA).
August 2016

This hearty stew includes large chunks of potato, carrot, celery, and onion, and portabella mushrooms stand in for the beef. Garlic, paprika, and fresh rosemary provide excellent flavor. This is one of my most popular recipes—especially with husbands!

Shopping tip: To avoid excess sodium, look for salt-free tomato paste.

1½ large yellow or white onions, chopped into ¾-inch pieces (about 3 cups)
3 medium carrots, sliced lengthwise and cut into ¾-inch pieces (about 2¼ cups)
3 ribs celery, cut into ¾-inch pieces (about 1 cup)
2 medium portabella mushrooms, cut into ¾-inch pieces (about 4 cups)
1½ tablespoons finely chopped garlic (about 6 medium cloves)
5 cups water
2 pounds white potatoes, peeled and cut into ¾-inch chunks (about 6 cups)
1/3 cup tomato paste (half of a 6-ounce can)
1 tablespoon dried Italian herb seasoning
1 tablespoon paprika
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
1½ cups cooked peas (if frozen, thaw a little with warm water)
½ cup fresh parsley, chopped

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of water in a soup pot over medium-high heat. When the water starts to sputter, add the onions, carrots, and celery, and cook, stirring frequently, for about 8 minutes, adding water, as needed.

  2. Stir in the mushrooms and garlic, and continue to cook while stirring for 5 minutes more, adding water as needed.

  3. Add the water, potatoes, tomato paste, Italian seasoning, and paprika, and bring to a boil, uncovered. Reduce the heat to medium-low and stir in the rosemary. Cover and cook for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until the carrots and potatoes are very tender.

  4. Add the peas and cook for 5 minutes more.

  5. Place 2 cups of the stew (broth and vegetables) into a blender, and blend just briefly. Stir the mixture back into the pot to thicken the stew. Stir in the parsley.

Preparation: about 30 minutes
Cooking: 45 minutes
Serves: 6 to 8 (makes about 10 cups)