It’s a new year and MyVeronaNJ.com has got something cooked up that will help you get off to a fresh start and get those hot meals on the table even on the busiest of days. Here’s the deal: We’ve got a Crock-Pot®, a Cook It! Verona cookbook, and a bottle of Fig Balsamic Vinegar to give away. Not sure what to do with all that? Well, here is a recipe to get you started, then we’ll tell you how the giveaway will work.
A few days after my interview with the owners of Olive That! And More, I went back into the store looking specifically for a balsamic vinegar to accompany my latest creation, which of course was already cooking. I knew that balsamic vinegar would sweeten over time while cooking, but I was looking for something that would compliment butternut squash and red onion, key ingredients in the dish. I set myself up at Olive That’s tasting bar and went to work. The winning balsamic was fig: Sweet and delicious, it added only a mild vinegar flavor to the meat while cooking (my kids didn’t even notice) but when drizzled over the finished product, added an incredible depth of flavor that just brought the dish together.
Slow Cooked Beef With Fig And Butternut Squash
2-3 lbs. hanger steak
1 small butternut squash, peeled, seeded, and cut into 1″ cubes
1 large red onion, peeled and cut in quarters or sixths (see below)
1 can beef broth
1/2 cup fig balsamic vinegar
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil
Season meat with salt and pepper. Brown in a large pan or dutch oven with a little olive oil. Just 3-5 minutes per side.
Place beef in sloow cooker.
Saute red onion in pan from beef for just a few minutes so it absorbs some of the beef flavoring.
Add onion to slow cooker.
Add squash, broth and vinegar to slow cooker and stir to combine.
Cover and cook on high for 4 hours or low for 6 hours.
When serving, drizzle a little fig balsamic vinegar over each plate.
Notes from my experience:
This was so very easy and so very delicious. I served it over tri-colored quinoa that I tossed with Olive That’s! Meyer Lemon olive oil, fresh rosemary and dried cranberries. It added both texture and diversity of flavor to the final dish.
Typically, my primary goal when making dinner is to get it on the table before too many snacks are consumed and young appetites ruined, but I wanted more from this meal and was not disappointed. I served it to my kids without the additional fig balsamic vinegar and told them the butternut squash was carrots. They loved the meat, but alas, the squash was pushed off to the side. Their loss.
Now for the giveaway:
We have a Crock-Pot®, a Cook It! Verona cookbook, and a bottle of Fig Balsamic Vinegar wrapped up and waiting for one lucky commenter. Simply tell us, in the Comments box below, which of our Crock It! recipes is your favorite or which recipe you most want to add the fig balsamic vinegar to. (This link will take you to all our Crock It! recipes.)
On Friday, January 11, we’ll put the names of all commenters in a hat and pick a winner. Which means you have to comment, as always, with your real name and real email address.