Hunter Porter Stew - Recipe

     This is one of the richest stews I have ever made.  It's ingredients remain distinctive and flavor a rich Porter broth.  The kielbasa gives it a spiciness, the cabbage and prunes a sweetness, and the mushrooms, especially the chanterelles, an earthiness that makes me think of the woods.  You may have fun and experiment using different varieties of mushrooms.  This dish is definitely company worthy!

Hunter Porter Stew

(Serves 6)

8 oz. Bacon cut into 1inch pieces
4 lb. Beef Chuck Roast cut in bite size pieces
1 Yellow Onion cut into bite sized pieces
1 head Garlic peeled and roughly chopped
3 Beef Soup Bones (optional)
1 head fresh Green Cabbage sliced thinly
12 oz. fully cooked Kielbasa or other robust sausage cut into bite size chunks
25 oz. Sour Kraut drained from natural brine liquid
8 oz. King Oyster Mushrooms roughly chopped
6 oz. Button Mushrooms roughly chopped
1/2 oz. Dried Chanterelle Mushrooms (soaked 1/2 hour in warm water, drained and rinsed)
2 Bay Leaves
2 tsp. Peppercorns (crushed)
1 tsp. Salt
12 oz. Porter
6 oz. Prunes

Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.  Fry the bacon in a 9.5 quart Dutch oven on the stove top using medium heat until brown.  Remove bacon and set aside.  Remove and set aside all but 2 tablespoons of bacon fat.  Fry beef pieces in batches until brown on all sides, setting them aside with the bacon as you go.  (Frying in batches keeps the pan from cooling down and maintains a frying environment as opposed to a steaming, simmering one.)  You may add more bacon grease if needed.  Add the onion, garlic, and soup bones to the pot.  Fry till onions are soft.  Add the cabbage and sauté till softened and the volume is decreased.  Add all the rest of the ingredients except for the prunes, and bring to a simmer.  There is very little liquid in this stew.  The vegetables will add more as it cooks and the broth will be tremendously flavorful.  Cover and braise in the oven for one hour.  Add the prunes, cover, and braise for another 30 minutes.  Serve with a whole grain bread.


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