This is a very basic beef stew that should please most people’s tastes.
It’s found in both the Ball Blue book and in the Ball / Bernardin Complete book.
It’s quick to assemble for canning.
Ball does give some options for jazzing it up a bit; see “Recipe options” below.
Jar size choices: Half-litre (US pint / 16 oz) OR litre (US quart / 32 oz)
Processing method: Pressure canning only
Yield: 14 x half-litre (pint) OR 7 x litre (quart) jars
Headspace: 3 cm (1 inch)
Processing pressure: 10 lbs (69 kPa) weighted gauge, 11 lbs (76 kpa) dial gauge (adjust pressure for your altitude when over 300 metres / 1000 feet.)
Processing time: Half-litres (pints) 75 minutes; litres (quarts) 90 minutes
If you don’t have a pressure canner, you can freeze this in plastic containers or straight-sided jars with no shoulders. (Water-bath canning is not acceptable for safety reasons.)
- 2 kg potato (diced. 3 quarts / 4 lbs. Measurements after prep. About 18 medium. )
- 1 kg carrots (sliced. 2 quarts / 2 lbs. Measurements after prep. About 15 small.)
- 400 g celery (chopped. 3 cups / 14 oz. Measurements after prep. About 6 stalks.)
- 450 g onion (chopped. 3 cups / 1 lb. Measurements after prep. 4 to 5 medium. )
- 2 kg stewing beef (4 to 5 lbs)
- 1 tablespoon oil
- 1 ½ teaspoons salt (Or non-bitter, non-clouding salt sub)
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- ½ teaspoon ground black pepper
- water (boiling)
- Wash and peel the potatoes. Wash again, then dice. Put in a large pot.
- Wash, peel, wash again, then slice the carrots. Add to the large pot.
- Wash the celery, slice. Add to the large pot.
- Wash, peel, chop the onions coarsely. Add to the large pot.
- Cut the beef into 4 cm (1 ½ inch) cubes. Set aside.
- Heat the vegetable oil in a frying pan. Add the stewing beef in batches, brown it, add to the large pot.
- Add all remaining ingredients to the pot.
- Add just enough boiling water from a kettle to cover (depending on your pot shape, etc, that may be around 2 - 3 litres / quarts / 8 - 12 cups. Exact amount does not matter).
- Bring to a boil.
- Jar size choices: half-litre (1 US pint) or 1 litre (US quart)
- Ladle mixture evenly into hot jars. Should you need more liquid, use boiling water from a kettle.
- Leave 3 cm (1 inch) headspace.
- Debubble; adjust headspace.
- Wipe jar rims.
- Put lids on.
- Processing pressure: 10 lbs (69 kPa) weighted gauge, 11 lbs (76 kpa) dial gauge (adjust pressure for your altitude when over 300 metres / 1000 feet)
- Processing time: half- litre (1 US pint) 75 minutes; 1 litre (US quart) 90 minutes.
See also if applicable: Dial Gauge Pressures.
How to pressure can.
When pressure canning, you must adjust the pressure for your altitude.
For salt substitute, Herbamare Sodium-Free was used.
The Ball Blue Book says, “Customize our recipe to make it your very own. Here’s how you do it: combine potatoes and turnips to equal 3 quarts cubed root vegetables, reduce the measure of onion to 2 cups, then add 1 cup peas, green beans, or corn. Sprinkle in additional dried herbs and spices to your liking. To finish it off, add a splash of hot sauce or maybe wine.”
- The beef can be a tougher cut such as round, chuck, etc.
- Be prepared for the recipe to possibly make a few extra jars;
- You can always thicken it if you wish upon serving. Stir in 1 tablespoon of cornstarch (aka cornflour in the UK) or flour per half-litre (pint). Zap in microwave for 1 minute, stir, and zap an additional 2 to 3 minutes depending on the power of your microwave and the quantity you are preparing.
Ball Blue Book. Muncie, Indiana: Healthmark LLC / Jarden Home Brands. Edition 37. 2014. Page 104.
Kingry, Judi and Lauren Devine. Ball / Bernardin Complete Book of Home Preserving. Toronto: Robert Rose. 2015. Page 407.
SALT: The Blue Book calls for 1 ½ teaspoons of salt. The Complete calls for 4 ½ teaspoons of salt. Online, Ball calls for 1 ½ TABLESPOONS of salt (as of December 2016.) We used 1 ½ teaspoons, as more can easily be added to taste at the table.
Cooking with canning
Serving size: 2 cup (500 ml)
Weight Watchers SmartPoints®: 10 points per 2 cups / 500 ml
Per 2 cup (500 ml): 406 calories, 419 mg sodium
No-added salt version
Per 2 cup (500 ml): 406 calories, 171 mg sodium
* Nutrition info provided by https://caloriecount.about.com