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Mexican Beef and Tomatillo Stew

August 18, 2019

Our local farmer’s market has had fresh tomatillos for the last few weeks, and we’ve been taking advantage of them. Last week we made enchiladas verdes (using a Cooks Illustrated recipe we’ve used lots of times before), but this week, thanks to the timely arrival of a new Milk Street Magazine recipe, we decided to try our hand at the Mexican Beef and Tomatillo Stew.

When we formed this plan, the high for today was supposed to be 76, and after several days of 90+ degree weather we figured that would seem cool enough for us to have the oven on for several hours. The actual high was more like 84, so having the oven on that long made things a little toasty in the kitchen. But the recipe is mostly hands-off: throw lots of stuff in a dutch oven, put it in the oven for 2 hours, pull it out and put some more stuff in, then put it back in the oven for another hour and a half. So we could escape to cooler parts of the house.

The stew turned out fairly tasty. My palate has been trained enough by the enchiladas that it kept expecting pepper jack cheese (apparently I now associated it with the flavor of fresh tomatillos), but the dish didn’t need it. The tomatillos provided a bright, clean flavor that contrasted nicely with the earthiness of the beef and potatoes. Definitely worth making again. Too bad it’s harder to find fresh tomatillos in the fall, though; it’s a lot nicer cooking for several hours when the air is cool and crisp, as opposed to hot and dry.

From → Cooking

  1. Carla permalink

    Looks delicious. I am about to make this same recipe. I had a question..It seems odd that you cook the beef cubes in the oven with no liquid. Is that what you did? I am assuming that once you add the tomatillos, you would get some liquid. Would you use the same method again? thank you.

    • Jeff permalink

      The stew is drier than many other stews we’ve made, since it does primarily rely on liquid from the tomatillos. It does turn out very tasty, but we found it better to eat in tortillas than in a bowl like a more traditional stew.

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