No exotic spices here, just classic comfort food with plenty of flavor - perfect for a brisk day. Make this in the middle of the afternoon and let it simmer away over very low heat until dinner time.
2 lbs stew beef, cubed
1 Tbsp all purpose flour
1/4 tsp chili powder
Salt and pepper to taste
3 medium onions, diced
2 1/2 - 3 lbs fingerling potatoes, cubed or in 1/2-inch rounds
3 large carrots, diced or in rounds
1 tsp dried thyme
3 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
Place the beef in a bowl and toss with the flour, chili powder, and a liberal sprinkling of salt and pepper.
Heat some canola oil in a large pot. Add the beef and brown well over high heat. Strong browning action here will produce better flavor for the stew.
When the beef is browned, add the onions and stir well. Continue to cook for 2-3 minutes, as the onions brown a little bit too. Add the potatoes and carrots to the pot, then enough beef stock to cover all ingredients. Add the thyme and Worcestershire sauce and some more salt. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low and simmer until the beef is tender, at least 30 minutes - an hour or even longer would be better if you have the time.
Serves about 6.