How Can I Take the Stress Out of Holiday Cooking?

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All right we're back, everyone's favorite can-do chef and cook Rachel Ray is here. She'll be solving your holiday cooking disasters, providing much needed assistance one of the most stressful times of the year. Thank goodness she's here because I would not have been able to help at all.

Now Rachel is going to show you her number one can fill of Christmas recipes and she says anyone can make it without a problem, these are secrets I have never heard of before but ladies they work and even if you don't think you can cook like the three of you and hundreds others who wrote us and millions across the country you can make this meal.

This is your go to Christmas meal. Please download this you guys you are absolutely going to loving this it's my mum cedar beef stew and we have been having this every holiday season all winter along for as long as I can remember and what's so great about a stew if it is a slow cooked meal you can't screw it up and the longer it sets the better it gets and the left overs are fantastic.

So for stew we live up in upstate New York, we start everything with a little bit of bacon, you omit that if we want to cut down on the animal fat. We brown a little bit of Oscar's Smokehouse bacon, we've known the family my whole life. So we brown a little bit of bacon to start this in a little bit of olive oil, you can skip that as you like go right to low canola oil.

That's what you would do right? Yes. I will do that. Okay, now we start with beef chuck which is an expensiveness cut of meat, it's lean but it's very slow cooking so it's perfect for stew. So you cube it up into a big bite size chunks and brown it in bunches in the pan, don't crowd the pan, brown it in the bottom of your Dutch oven and take all the meat out, then you start adding your vegetables.

I have apples and onions already going in here, give me some carrots please. I have been told to cut in an angle like this. Cut in angle, yes not that thin, big it's stew. Tuck your fingers in you need those for doctoring. You are making this very difficult. Give me this. You told me not to cut them and I can't cut straight.

If they were straight I would have done already. See curl your fingers under or they're going to end up calling you right here lefty [xx] to loose something and then just big chunks on an angle, see. I can do it. Just like that. Let me in coach. All right, yeah, good job. There we go, okay.

Good enough. A couple of this celery things. That little novel you left down there that's the little extra fiber that's right. Celery, he's very good at it, very strong with the celery. There we go. Now you have celery, apples, and onions in here, you let that cook and welt up a little bit on the stove top.

Now for lazy people who don't want to bother chopping the herbs, this is brilliant. Just tie them in a little bundle and make a bouquet garnishes. You take sage, time, persley. You just tie it with kitchen strings, throw it in. I could tie that knot, that's good. Done. That's it? Bay leaf, done.

You don't have to cut it up? You don't have to cut it up, you just throw it in there, fish it out later. That's fine. You should throw it away later on? You just pull it out later. You don't have to bother chopping it. Very easy, everything is chopped big, your brown meat you add this to the pot.

You straw the meat back in, you add cider, add the nice cloudy organic cider. And then a little bit of beef consomme. This is just, that's a fancy word for flavorful for beef broth it has a little bit of the gelatin in it and then you mix this together and throw it in the oven at 325 for two and a half to three hours.

Now what if you leave it for four hours, what happens? It's going to get a little too far gone. You need to set a timer to take it out at two and a half, three hours, but you can reheat it over and over again on the stove top where you'd want to keep it over very low heat. If you miss the mark by half an hour it won't matter, if you miss the mark by like two hours, yes it's going to look like dog food.

But I mean this is the easiest thing in the world, and you've got two and a half, three hours to play with it. What about the garlic? You're tempting me with this. Roasted garlic. Now one of the things that I like is to add roasted garlic to this, it's sweet and creamy and mushy. Show them how you do that, that's really cool.

You just squeeze the garlic after you roast it in the oven right out the skin, it just squishes right out. These are the strongest fingers I've ever seen. Then you add that right down into the pot. Drops your blood pressure by the way folks. Garlic is very good for you. There we are. And it's sweet and delicious.

So you throw this in the oven and then it's going to look like that guy there, take the lid off him show everybody. Look at this folks, this is it! Beautiful.