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Basic Slimmer Stew
1 lb. boneless lean meat (beef round or leg of lamb veal or pork or turkey) cut in 1 1/2-inch cubes
2 onions -- peeled and sliced
2 cups combined liquid (e. g. 1/2 C. dry red wine plus 1 1/2 cups fat-skimmed stock or broth - canned or homemade)
salt and pepper to taste
seasonings (example: 1 bay leaf 1 minced garlic clove 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme)
3 C. cut-up vegetables (example: carrots & potatoes & celery: 1 cup of each)
2 T. flour
1/3 C. cold water
In slow cooker: First brown the meat in a nonstick skillet or electric fry pan according to directions in No. 1 (this step may be omitted but stew will be less flavorful. ) Remove meat to slow cooker. De-glaze skillet with one cup liquid and add to meat. Add no additional liquid. Add all remaining ingredients, including sliced vegetables. Turn cooker to high setting for 30 minutes, then turn to low. Cook at low setting 6 to 8 hours or more, until very tender. Remove cover and skim fat. Turn to high. Make flour-water paste. Stir into simmering liquid and cook on "high, " stirring often, until sauce is gravy-thick.
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