after a lunch of sauerkraut chicken sausage and scrambled eggs, i biked down to market basket to get some ingredients for making beef stew. the place was surprisingly empty, considering that we have a major storm heading our way later tonight. although it will be snow and ice and many places, the areas along the coastline including boston will just receive rain.

beef stew(4 qt. crock pot)

2 lbs. NY sirloin steak
2 russet potatoes
1 onion
3 garlic cloves, chopped
2 cups frozen vegetables
1 can beef broth
1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
1/2 tbsp brown sugar
1/4 cup of flour
salt/pepper to taste

there's nothing particularly hard about beef stew, just gather the ingredients and throw them into the crockpot. i wanted to get some roasting beef, but there was a sale on sirloin ($2.99/lbs.) so that was actually cheaper, therefore i got that instead. i chopped the beef into cubes, sprinkled salt and ground pepper over them, and tried to sear them before adding to the crockpot. apparently my frying pan wasn't hot enough because i mostly browned them, and only really seared the final batch. my house did smell like a savory barbecue joint afterwards.

i was also prepared to make a heavy cassava cake (with the 3 lbs. yuca i bought from haymarket many weeks ago), but i wasn't happy with the coconut milk selection at market basket, so i will hold until i can get better coconut milk.

my father dropped by in the afternoon to pick up my 4 jars of kimchi. i slow-cooked the stew from 2pm to 8pm. around 7pm i mixed some flour with half a cup of broth to make a thickening gravy that i added to the stew. i also cooked up a cup of rotini.

the final stew was okay, but nothing spectacular. maybe i didn't add enough salt, but i try not to add too much when i cook for myself. the beef on top of the stew were a little dry and chewy, but the beef submerged in the broth were very tender. i got russet potatoes but they didn't really break down in the slow cooker. maybe next time i have to boil them first separately before adding to the stew. if nothing else, it was a very hearty meal, with chunks of beef, potatoes, and pasta.

while standing in the kitchen i discovered a major source of draft inside my house: the gap below the baseboards on the eastern side of the kitchen. i measured it with m temperature gun, in the worst areas there's as much as a 10° difference. tomorrow's project will be to get some clear caulk and fill in the gaps.