I love one-pot meals that bake slowly in the oven and come out transformed into a delicious meal. Sailor Steak Casserole is such a meal, and it makes its own gravy while it’s cooking.
My grandma used to make this when I was little, but I’ve added some of my own tweaks to it. It also can be made gluten-free or cooked in a crock-pot.
Sailor Steak Casserole
1 1/2 pounds bottom round steaks, 1/4-inch thick
Salt and coarse black pepper
Flour, for steak (can substitute gluten-free flour)
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
4 tablespoons butter, divided
2 large or 3-4 medium onions, sliced
1 large bay leaf
2 tablespoons fresh thyme, chopped
4 large potatoes, washed with skins on and thinly sliced
1 large can beef broth
1 bottle lager beer
1 bag of frozen peas
Chopped flat leaf parsley, for garnish
Pre-heat the oven to 275 degrees F.
Season the beef with salt and pepper on both sides and dredge with flour.
Heat a large skillet with 1 tablespoon oil and 1 tablespoon butter over medium-high heat. Brown half of the meat on each side and remove to a plate. Add more oil and butter and repeat. Once all the meat is browned, add the remaining butter, the onions, bay leaf, thyme, salt and pepper and cook until light golden, 10-12 minutes. Remove the bay leaf.
Arrange one-third of the potatoes in a casserole dish, season with salt and pepper and cover with half of the onions, and half of the meat. Repeat the layers and top with the remaining potatoes. Pour the beer and broth evenly over the casserole and cover. Bake for 2 1/2-3 hours, until very tender. Uncover, top with peas and bake for additional 10 minutes. Garnish with parsley and serve.
• Recipe adapted from rachelray.com.
• Chef Debi Stuckwisch is the owner of Meals Like Mom’s Personal Chef service in McHenry County. She can be reached at 847-778-9351 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or visit her new website at www.mealslikemom.com.