Slow Cooker Beef in Red Wine – The Hedgecombers
This recipe for slow-cooker beef in red wine is very easy to put together. It has a rich and decadent taste, while being extremely nutritious.
A magical thing happens when you cook meat in a slow cooker
The structure of the meat changes to the point that it literally crumbles tenderly.
It becomes soft and almost creamy, which not only makes it incredibly tasty, but also extremely easy to digest.
Slow Cooker Easy Beef Stew
As with most savory recipes, let’s start with onions and garlic
I’m opting to use these little shallots, but you can certainly swap them out for regular onions if you prefer.
Shallots tend to be more expensive than regular white onions. So if you’re looking at the budget, this is an easy place to save a few pennies.
Next I will add 6 cloves of fresh
To make it easier to peel the garlic cloves, I cut the blunt end of each nail, then crushed the entire tooth under the flat blade of a cutting knife
The paper casing falls off easily.
However, if you have a jar of garlic ready to use in the fridge, you can certainly use it
instead. In this recipe I would use
about 1 heaping teaspoon instead of the fresh one
You could also use dried garlic powder in a pinch, but this would prove much more expensive.
If that’s all you have, I would go with about 1 level teaspoon.
The best slow
cooker cuts Here in the
UK, the best cuts to look for when making a slow cooker stew are happily the cheapest too!
These cheaper cuts usually have more fat, tendons, and even cartilage. However, when those “chunks” are cooked slowly, they melt, soften and give up.
This adds even more flavor to that delicious sauce, and more nutrients as well.
- Beef Chuck
- Breast Meat stew
- (this will probably be a mixture of parts of the animal, the pieces that the butcher trims from other joints he prepares)
Preparing meat for
Of course, you can cook a whole joint of meat in a slow cooker, but in this receipe we have opted to cut the meat into bite-sized pieces.
This will have two benefits:
1/ It will make the whole dish
cook faster 2/ It will make the dish
cheaper. With smaller pieces of meat, you can easily increase the stew with more vegetables, thus stretching the meat to feed more people. And this will not make a dent in the taste at all.
By throwing the pieces of meat into flour, it allows you to get a beautiful crispy seal
in the pan.
And once in the slow cooker, the flour will work together with the red wine to create a thick, rich, decadent sauce.
Once the meat has browned, you can put it in the slow cooker that awaits you
Then add the onions to the pan and mix until they have also acquired some color.
and why!) to deglaze your
At this point, the bottom of the pan will sport a crispy layer of flavor. And this should not be wasted!
So the next step is to pour the red wine into the pan and, as
it bubbles, simply scrape off all that flavor stuck to the bottom with a spatula
. If the chef is on
terms, this is known as “deglazing” a pan and will add even more flavor to the red wine that will become our sauce.
<img src="https://hedgecombers.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/slow-cooker-beef-in-red-wine-9996-1.jpg" alt="yellow enamel pan on a black stove with red wine boiling and the bottom
of the pan scraped with a wooden spatula” />
Finally, you can add everything to the
Beef, shallots, garlic, red wine with all those delicious pieces scraped from the pan.
This is also the time to add the mustard. I’m using both whole wheat mustard and Dijon mustards.
If you prefer, you can use only one mustard (only twice the amount you add).
But since small jars of mustard are really cheap, if you can stretch to use both, I would wholeheartedly recommend it.
<img src="https://hedgecombers.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/01/slow-cooker-beef-in-red-wine-0003-1.jpg" alt="woman's hands spoonfuls of whole wheat mustard in a white slow cooker
on a wooden counter” /
>How long to cook a meat stew in
the slow cooker
And finally you can put the slow cooker!
You have a plethora of options at this point.
If you want your meal to be ready in 3-4 hours, simply change it to ‘High’.
If you want your meal
to be ready in 6-8 hours, change it to ‘Low’.
While this slow-cooker meat in red wine stew will cook at the 6-hour mark, you can leave it high for the full 8 hours without risk of burning, drying out (or setting your house on fire!)
Slow cookers can also be left on safely overnight or while you’re out all day in work.
new to cooking with a slow cooker and this makes you nervous, why not try a couple of times while you’re home all day first?
Once you overcome the worry that it will explode (which it won’t!) I think you’ll fall in love with this simple way of cooking as much as I do!
And in case you’re already a slow-cooker devotee,
here’s my entire collection of recipes: Slow cooker recipes
Another thing to quickly mention if you’re new to the world of slow cookers.
Once the lid is on and turned on for the first time, don’t worry at all.
A slow cooker works by slowly increasing to the temperature needed to cook your food. Each time the lid is lifted, the temperature drops and it will add another 1/2 hour or so to the total cooking time.
So as fascinating as it is, step back and let it do its job 🙂