This is Christmas Eve, the day before the most important holiday in this land.
It's a good time to contemplate the good lives we live. Most of us can be thankful we were born into such a time of abundance. If you are thoughtful about it, then it might take you some time to count your blessings.
That being said, there are those amongst us who are not doing so well, are alone for the holidays, or whose future might not seem so bright.
Perhaps you know someone like that? What can you do to help? The answer is probably not much, but you can invite the lonely to your table, and you can cook for them. Sharing food is about as a good a thing as you can do.
Feed them this hearty stew and they will likely smile with contentment.
1 pound beef stew meat (round or chuck)
1/2 cup flour
2 cup chopped onions
1 cup chopped carrots
1 cup whole (canned tomatoes, drained)
1 bottle red wine
2-3 cups beef stock
1 bay leaf
Season the beef with pepper, toss in the flour and sear in oil in a large, deep and thick pot. Take your time and get a good sear. Remove the beef and set aside. Add the onions and carrots to the same pan, add oil if needed, season again and cook for 5 minutes. Add the liquid and bay leaf and simmer for at least 1 hour. When the beef is almost as tender as you want it add the thyme. If you want to make it just a bit more delicious, thick and silky add butter. As much as you like! Serve with crusty bread and a good bottle of red wine. Make toasts to a bright and happy future.