Mulligan stew was once a catchall supper used to clean out the fridge (and pantry). We refined it into a dish all its own.
Why This Recipe Works
The key to a successful (not stodgy) Mulligan stew is a judicious combination of the right ingredients and adding them at the proper time. First, we brown cubes of beef chuck and then carrot and onion. For an acidic component, we add canned diced tomatoes, along with their juice and reduce the juice to concentrate the tomato flavor. A smoky ham hock adds flavor and body to the stew, while earthy turnip and potato add complexity. Incorporating just a small amount (1/2 cup) of pearl barley contributes a silky texture. Green beans and cabbage, added near the end of cooking, ensure that the stew will be finished with fresh texture and flavor.