Crunchyroll #19: Beef Stew from FMA: Brotherhood!
Learn how to make it here.
We all have foods we don’t like. For example, I hate eggs. This is a fact. It is known. But did you know? Just like a very famous and super cool anime protagonist, I also HATE MILK!!! Dun dun DUUUUUUN.
True story. I’ll drink it with cereal, but that’s about it. And, somewhat coincidentally, Edward Elric, one of my all time favorite anime characters (nostalgia level = too high), hates milk too! When I saw that Crunchyroll had acquired Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood, I just knew, both to satisfy my inner 12 year old and my desire to share my hatred for milk, that I would have to find a recipe to recreate for this anime. I’ve already done Winry’s Apple Pie, so I was looking for a new challenge. Luckily, my highly esteemed and most beautiful roommate suggested I make Ed and Al’s favorite dish- beef stew!
Quintessentially, this stew boggles Ed because it contains the dreaded beverage- milk. He is flabbergasted that such a horrid liquid can be made delicious when combined with other ingredients. He uses this as a rather sophisticated metaphor for explaining alchemy to his brother Al while they were learning about it, which is really kind of impressive when you consider that Ed was a measly 9 year old kid at the time.
I always loved that Ed was so passionate about sticking up for himself and what he wants- he never drank his milk, even though he wanted to be taller, and did (somewhat stubbornly) what he wanted to do, (and sometimes against the better judgement of his friends). To me, when I watched this show as a light-hearted youth, he was the coolest guy ever- smart, ready for action, and unafraid to take on a challenge. To make things better, he was funny- easily teased about his height and easily goaded into silly challenges, resulting in amusing alchemy battles with others. (By the way, anyone remember that alchemy battle with Mustang in the original anime series? I showed that episode to my parents when they proclaimed a desire to learn about what my sister and I were watching all the time. It’s a funny episode, except that we’d forgotten about Mustang’s “Mini-Skirt Campaign”, which also appears in that episode, and that did not go over very well with my mom…).
So, the best thing we can do is to honor Ed’s hatred of milk by making it delicious! Not having a lot of ingredients to go off of, I went for a basic beef stew recipe. I’d never made this dish before, so I wanted to start off with a basic recipe that was both easy to make, and as tasty as I could possibly make it. The good news here is that if you can chop veggies, measure out ingredients, and stir a pot of food, this is the recipe for you.
This picture demonstrates Ed and Pinako yelling while Al and Winry try to eat their stew.
Recipe adapted from this recipe for beef stew.
DISCLAIMER: There are many ways you can make beef stew! A few people have mentioned that browning the meat beforehand will produce a better stew. The great thing about this recipe is that there is not a specific recipe to follow from the manga or anime. You can do whatever you want, as long as it tastes good to you! I thought this tasted amazing, and my friends agreed, but you can really do whatever you want. That’s the great thing about cooking at home- you can adapt recipes as much as you want to suit your preferences.
-2 stalks celery
-1 tsp dried thyme
-1 bay leaf
-Salt and pepper
-1 1/2 lbs. stewing beef
-2 cups beef broth
-1/8 cup tomato paste
-1 tbsp red wine vinegar or balsamic vinegar
-1/8 cup all-purpose flour
-1 cup milk, divided
-1 lbs potatoes
Making the Stew!
Start by chopping your celery, onion, and carrots to bite sized pieces.
In a large pot, heat some oil or butter over medium high heat. When melty and the pot is warm, saute onions, carrot, and celery with bay leaf, thyme, salt, and pepper for about 10 minutes, until onion is soft.
While that’s softening, take out stew meat and cut down any larger chunks so they’re more bite-sized.
In a measuring cup, measure out your beef broth, water, and buillion. Add vinegar to this broth. Open tomato paste and measure out. Set aside.
When onion is soft, dump beef into the pot and toss around until all pieces are separated and slightly browned. Season again with salt and pepper.
Pour in your beef broth and vinegar mixture, as well as the tomato paste. Mix together until tomato paste is dissolved into the broth. Cover with a lid, and reduce heat to low. Stir on and off for the next 45 minutes.
While you wait, tidy up and prepare the milk. Whisk 1/4 cup milk with the flour and set aside. Don’t whisk the flour into all the milk- you’ll get lumps and the milk might sieze when you pour it all into the hot stew. Measure out the rest of the milk and set aside.
Peel and chop the potatoes into 1 inch pieces, and set aside.
When the stew is ready- beef is starting to get tender- raise the heat and add in the potatoes.
Quickly microwave the larger portion of milk so that it’s steaming- it’s important that you do this so that when you add it to the stew, the milk doesn’t curdle due to the heat differences. This took me about 45 seconds in the microwave.
Add in the milk/flour mixture to the stew, and stir through.
Then, add in the milk and stir everything to combine. Lower heat to low, and allow to simmer, uncovered, for another 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until potatoes are softened.
Perform final taste tests for salt, and remove the bay leaf. And now it’s done!
This recipe is incredibly hearty and delicious. I’d honestly recommend doubling the ingredients to make an extra large batch so that you have leftovers. I have a hunch this would freeze well too, so you can have leftovers forever, if you wanted. I served mine up to my friend and roommate, and had to fight my roommate off the leftovers so that I could pack them up for lunch. According to her, a 9-star Food critic, this dish was “Hella good” and “10/10, would eat again.” I really think this stew would be even better in a breadbowl, or with a slice of bread to mop up the delicious sauce, at the very least. Ed sure knew what he was talking about when he waxed poetic about the merits of beef stew.
I hope you enjoyed this post! To check out more anime food recipes, visit my blog for more anime and manga themed food. If you have any questions or comments, leave them below! I recently got a twitter, so you can follow me at @yumpenguinsnack if you would like, and DEFINITELY feel free to send me food requests! My tumblr is yumpenguinsnacks.tumblr.com. Enjoy the food, and if you decide to recreate this dish, show me pics! 😀
In case you missed it, check out our last dish: Okonomiyaki from “Sweetness and Lightning”. What other famous anime dishes would you like to see Emily make on COOKING WITH ANIME?