Guinness Beef Stew




This recipe will serve 8-10 easily —

but it can be cut in half
or doubled with very little effort.
Which is saying something
since this recipe
takes 18+ hours to make….



While I was prepared for the food gastropolis that is Portland (if you can ever really be prepared for such a thing…) — what I wasn’t expecting was the high Irish, Scot, and otherwise British Isles-heavy population of NW Oregon and it’s central coast.  –which also means a wildly varied collections of pubs and breweries.  For a newly transplanted Oregonian, there turn out to be as many (or more) micro-breweries as there are coffee roasters and vineyards in the Pacific Northwest — and as a result (or maybe it’s the cause?) home-cooking recipes and pub-grub to feed the masses both tend to lean toward recipes made with ale, stout, and all iterations of beer.

So — cheers!  Bring on the beef and beer!

Seasoning blend to marinate 3 – 3 1/2 lbs beef:


1″ cubes of beef (chuck, loin, rump roast or steaks)

1 T cracked pepper corns
1 T salt
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 t ground cloves
1/2 t ground allspice
1/2 t
1/2 t ground coriander
pinch cayenne
1/2 t basil
1/2 t thyme
1 T parsley or savory
pinch nutmeg
1 t garam masala
1 t lemon zest
1 t smoked paprika
1/2 t cumin
16 oz Guinness beer
1 T Worcestershire sauce
1 T soy sauce
1 T apple cider vinegar
1 T orange juice

Place beef (cut into 1″ cubes” in non-reactive bowl with cover OR a jumbo Zipper-top bag, and add all powdered spices + beer + other liquids.  Mix well and chill in fridge overnight.  If using a bag to marinate, set the bag in a bowl to protect fridge in case of leaks.

Preparing barley:

soak 1 1/2 c hulled barley (not pearled)  in 5 c. water until time to prepare stew (about 4 1/2 -5 hrs)

Preparation of stock:

Using a sheet pan, bake the following, uncovered, at 350 for 1 1/2 hrs:images

use 1/3 c olive oil to slightly toss the following:
2 lbs veal or beef bones
1 carrot, chopped
1 med onion, chopped
1 leek, chopped
1 celery stalk, chopped

spread the mixture of bones and veggies on a non-stick sheet cake baking pan and bake uncovered for 1 1/2 hrs at 350.

Remove from oven, and use 1-2 c Guinness to deglaze the pan, and add the roasted bones/veg, deglazing liquid with as much of the browned matter on the sheet pan as possible, to a stockpot containing:

2 quarts organic beef stock0003068487676_500X500
2 quarts Guinness
1 T fresh ground black pepper
1 t salt
2 T organic blackstrap molasses
banquet garni [made from 3 cloves garlic, 2 bay leaves, sprigs of fresh thyme and parsley, 4 cloves, 4 allspice berries, 1/2 stick soft Ceylon cinnamon (broken), 1 coriander pod, broken]

Simmer for 3 hrs on low and  reduce by 1/2.

Strain stock, discarding all but liquid.  Remove as much fat as possible from the surface.

Preparing Stew:

Add 3 T olive oi and 3 T salted butter to the bottom of your soup pot over med. heat.  Add rinsed marinated beef,
1 c diced onionleeks
1 c diced celery
1 c diced carrots
1 c diced potato
1 c diced mixed mushrooms
1 c sliced leeks
1 clove crushed garlic
1 T fresh ground black pepper
1 t kosher salt

Saute until meat is thoroughly grayed and beginning to brown, and all veggies are beginning to cook through.

Add 1/2 c all-purpose flour and toss/stir until everything in the pot is coated, and make a roux that is blond-chestnut brown.

photo-1Use 1 qt Organic beef stock to deglaze the pan, and add Guinness/stock prepared earlier, along with the drained and rinsed barley.  Bring the pot to a boil, cover, and reduce heat to a simmer.  simmer for 3-4 hrs, stirring at least every 1/2 hr.  Add additional organic beef stock/water as needed to maintain volume.

The stew is ready based on texture and consistency.  The beef should be butter-tender, the vegetables should have all but disappeared into the broth, and the barley should be to the point of nearly falling apart and thickening the stew.

Taste for seasoning.  Add 1 c Guinness and allow the soup to come back to a full boil — then serve with a light fruit and greens salad, and crusty Italian bread or, more appropriately, Irish soda bread.


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