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Braised Beef and Green Bean Stew (Lebanese Lubee)

Serves 4-6     adjust servings

This is a traditional Lebanese recipe that you are going to LOVE! Slow cooked braised beef and green beans, spiced with cinnamon and cumin. (Do we need to do a trust fall? TRUST ME guys! My whole family loves this dish!) 

Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons clarified butter (ghee)*
  • 1 pound chuck roast, cut into bite-sized pieces**
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 and 1/2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 32 ounces tomato sauce
  • 1 pound green beans, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces***
  • chopped parsley, to garnish
  • plain Greek yogurt, to garnish
  • hot rice, to serve with

Instructions

Stovetop Instructions:

  1. Heat a large stock pot (with a wide bottom) over medium-high heat. When it is hot, add clarified butter (or a mix of olive oil and butter will do). 
  2. Spread the beef chunks out on a plate or cutting board. Sprinkle with a generous amount of salt and pepper (about 1 teaspoon+ salt).
  3. When the oil/butter is hot, add the beef. Separate each piece and make sure it is touching the bottom of the pan. You don't want the pieces to touch each other, ideally. 
  4. Cook for about 2 minutes, then use tongs to flip each piece of beef. Brown the other side for 1-2 minutes, then remove the meat to a plate and set aside.
  5. Reduce the heat to medium. Add the chopped onions and saute until softened, about 4-5 minutes. 
  6. Add the beef back to the pot. Add cinnamon, cumin, garlic, another 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a few more grinds of pepper. Cook for 1 minute.
  7. Add 32 ounces of tomato sauce and stir, scraping up browned bits.
  8. Turn the heat down to low or medium low. You want it to be at a slight simmer and have some movement, but not some much that you will cook off all the liquid. I usually put the lid on, tilted so that it can vent.
  9. Simmer for 2 hours, stirring every 1/2 hour or so. Adjust the heat setting as necessary.
  10. Add the green beans and stir. Continue simmering for half hour to 45 minutes, until the green beans are tender and the meat is falling apart. You should be able to use a wooden spoon to break a piece of meat in half. 
  11. Serve with hot rice, and garnish with plain Greek yogurt and chopped parsley.

Slow Cooker Instructions:

Follow stovetop instructions through Step 6 (adding the spices and garlic). 

Add 24 ounces of tomato sauce (3 8-oz cans). Scrape up browned bits. 

Transfer to a slow cooker. Add the green beans and stir. Cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 6-7 hours. 

(If you accidentally added the full 32 ounces of tomato sauce to the slow cooker, don't stress about it. It will just be a little more liquid-y. You can combat this by turning the heat to high and removing the lid for the last 30 minutes of cook time, in an effort to cook off some of the liquid.)

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