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Celery and beef stew

This tangy celery and beef stew is slowly simmered in an herbal sauce to create a unique and flavorful dish.
Prep Time20 mins
Cook Time2 hrs 15 mins
Total Time2 hrs 35 mins
Course: khoresh, Main Course
Cuisine: Persian
Keyword: beef, Celery, herbs, stew
Servings: 4
Author: Omid Roustaei, The Caspian Chef

Ingredients

  • 8 tablespoon olive oil, divided
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 pound stew beef, cut into 1.5 inch pieces
  • 1.5 teaspoon salt, adjust as needed
  • 1/2 teaspoon pepper, ground
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric, ground
  • 2 ½ cups water
  • 1 bunch celery, about 10 celery stocks
  • 3 cups fresh parsley, finely chopped (only the tough part of the stem removed)
  • 1/2 cup fresh mint, finely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dry mint
  • 3 whole Limu Omani, poked with a knife, (Persian dried limes)

Instructions

  • In a large pot, heat half of the olive oil and saute the onions for about 10 minutes.
  • Add, garlic, stewed meat, salt, pepper and turmeric and saute for an additional 5 minutes.
  • Add water, bring to a gentle simmer, cover and simmer over low heat for 30 minutes.
  • While the beef is simmering, in a large frying pan add the remainder of the olive oil and saute the celery pieces over medium heat for 15 minutes.
  • Once celery has slightly softened and picked up some color, add the chopped fresh parsley and mint and saute for an additional 10 minute to remove some of the moisture and enhance the flavor of the herbs. Add the dried mint, mix into the mixture and remove from the heat.
  • Mix this celery and herb mixture with the beef stew, add the dried Persian limes, cover and cook for 1.5 hours over low heat.
  • The stew should be fragrant with the herbs and dried lime, and the meat and celery tender.
  • Serve with Persian saffron basmati rice and a side of plain yogurt or Maast-khiar (yogurt, cucumber, mint and rose petals).

Notes

Limu Omani is a dried Persian lime that offers an incredibly unique tang, flavor and aroma to this dish.  It can be purchased from Persian or Middle Eastern markets, or online. 
Can also substitute 1/2 cup of fresh lime juice for the dried limes.