A couple of weeks ago, I was feeling awful as I had such a bad sore throat that I was put on antibiotics and over-the-counter pain medication, plus I had my second COVID-19 vaccination shot. I was exhausted, could barely talk, and just wanted to be soothed. I told my husband I just wanted noodles and soup or something.
Weird way to start a recipe blog, eh? I’m getting there. My husband was tired too from working nearly 20 hours of overtime so we ordered a bunch of House Lo Mein from one of our favorite local Chinese food places for our “going out food” and since neither of us wanted to go on an extensive grocery shopping trip, I asked friends for recipes that included the veggies we had and stew meat (beef). I got some amazing suggestions but we settled on this recipe from my friend, Melissa.
I still needed to go to the grocery store for a few essentials but decided to alter the recipe a bit based on not wanting to buy a bunch of extra spices or extra veggies. We also weren’t in the mood to deal with bones and already had de-boned stew meat in the fridge. You are welcome to use my version or the original version. I’m curious how it tastes with the original spices! See notes at the end about quantities and things I would do differently next time!
Ingredients for Caldo de Res stew
- 1-2 tablespoons olive oil
- 12 cups of water
- 1 1/2-2 pounds stew meat (without bones)
- 2 pinches of salt
- 4 cloves of garlic, chopped or minced
- 1/2 large yellow onion
- 1/2 head of cabbage, chopped
- 2 carrots, sliced
- 3 stalks of celery, sliced
- 2 white potatoes, peeled and sliced
- 1 zucchini, sliced (I quartered it)
- 1 yellow squash, sliced
- 2 large tomatoes, chopped
- 1 corn on the cob, cut into 1-inch slices
- 6 tablespoons no-salt-added tomato sauce
- Heaping 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
- Heaping 1/4 teaspoon caraway seeds
- Heaping 1 tablespoon dried cilantro
Instructions for Caldo de Res stew
- This makes 8 quarts so use a large stew pot
- Chop the onion and garlic
- Start it cooking in the olive oil at medium heat
- Add the stew meat after about a minute or two
- Stir everything together to make sure the meat, onion, and garlic are all covered in oil to cook
- Let cook on medium heat until meat slightly browned
- Add water and salt and bring to a boil
- Boil for about 10-15 minutes then set on simmer for about 2 hours or so. You will want to skim off the foam that forms over the two hours
- Add all the other ingredients and cook on medium for at least 30-45 minutes, or until the potatoes and other veggies are soft enough to your liking (if it was pasta, I would call it slightly more cooked than al dente).
What I will consider doing different next time
- Cut the recipe in half. This recipe made a lot of stew, so much that we had to use two pots. It made a total of about 8 quarts. If I cut it in half or even not quite by 25 percent, it would fit in our 5-quart pot.
- Different corn style. The corn on the cob was gorgeous but it was awkward to eat. I might try to figure out how to add frozen corn next time.
- More spicing. It was originally called a Mexican soup and I changed it to Latin because I changed most of the spices. I thought it would be a lot stronger so I will likely increase the amounts of seasoning except the salt. We eat low sodium as much as possible but I knew that the broth needed to have a little salt so I kept the two pinches.
- Consider removing the potato. The potato is amazing, but for our low-carb diet during the week, I would likely reduce or remove the potato.
- Serve with rice. This was actually suggested in the original recipe and I think I might make my Mexican Brown Rice to eat with it or just brown rice to add to each serving to make an almost casserole type meal.
- Use the slow cooker. I want to figure out how to make this in the slow cooker without it turning to mush.