It was with interest the other day I saw stewing and casserole steak advertised on special and there was a $1 price difference – the
stewing steak was $8.99 per kilo and the casserole steak $9.99 per kilo.
This, of course, got me thinking “What is the difference between the two?” When I was in buying the steak I decided that the stewing steak was the one I liked the look of the best – it was marbled and while the steak wasn’t labelled as any particular cut it looked like blade or chuck whereas the casserole steak had little marbling and looked to me like topside. So I thought “Well, that is interesting” and popped the cheaper, more appealing (to me) stewing steak in my basket. When I got to the counter, I asked the person on the
checkout what the difference between the types of steak was and I was basically told exactly what I had already worked out, so for this butcher at least there is a difference between what meat you should use for stewing and casseroling, I personally, think they are pretty much interchangeable and it depends of your preface.
Cuts such as shin, chuck, blade, brisket and flank (these were the cuts I was told that were stewing steak) come from hard-working
areas of the beast so contained a lot of connective tissue which when cooked slowly for a long time breaks down and becomes melt in the mouth.
The casserole cuts included topside and fresh silverside and are leaner and do not contain much connective tissue and are also used as slow-roasting cuts.
For more information about the different beef and lamb cuts visit Beef + Lamb New Zealand.
Dijon, Mushroom & Beef Stew
Adding the carrots towards the end of the cooking time means they
retain some firmness and give the stew a lovely carrot flavour that is lost if they are cooked with the meat from the beginning.
I used Masterfoods Dijonnaise mustard which is smooth and creamy and gives the stew the same qualities without using any cream.
1 large (about 200g) onion, finely diced
2 sticks celery, sliced
750g stewing beef, in 2.5cm pieces
2 tbsp seasoned flour
2 cups beef stock
¼ cup Dijon-style mustard
1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
2 large (about 200g each) carrots, halved lengthwise, sliced
250g button mushrooms, quartered
¼ cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 Place 2 tbsp oil, onion and celery in a heavy-based saucepan over a medium heat, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, for 8-10 minutes or until onion is translucent. Remove and set aside.
2 Toss meat in flour to coat. Increase heat and add a little more oil to the pan, then brown meat in batches. Once browned remove and set aside with the onion mixture.
3 Add some of the stock to the pan and cook, stirring, to
deglaze and loosen any bits from the bottom. Stir in remaining stock and mustards and whisk to blend.
4 Return onion mixture and meat to the pan, cover, bring to simmering and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 1½-2 hours or until meat is tender.
5 Add carrots, bring back to simmering and simmer for 45 minutes longer or carrots are tender.
6 Meanwhile, melt a knob of butter in a frying pan over a medium heat, add mushrooms and sauté for 10-15 minutes or until brown and tender.
7 Stir mushrooms into the meat mixture, bring back to
simmering and simmer for 10 minutes longer. Stir in parsley and
season to taste with salt and black pepper
Happy cooking and eating.
Recipe by Rachel Blackmore
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Other beef stews and casseroles you might like to try: