Eastern Spices Beef Stew with Prunes & Pearl Onions


1.5 lbs good stew meat cut into 1½” cubes
2 C pearl onions, blanched and peeled, kept whole
1 ½ C sliced baby bella mushrooms
1 ½ C prunes, whole
2 ½ C Beef Bullion (I use Knorr cubes)
¾ C water
1 C red wine, preferably a nice cabernet
2 T lite olive oil
2 T butter, salted
3 T red wine vinegar
1 bay leaf
2 cinnamon sticks
2 t paprika
Kosher salt and pepper to taste
2 – 3 t corn starch
5 sprigs of fresh thyme


  • Heat a Dutch oven to very hot and add the olive oil and butter. Sear the meat on each side for about 2 minutes. Add the mushrooms and cook until they begin to brown. Add the broth, bay leaf, cinnamon sticks, paprika and about 2 t kosher salt and ½ t pepper. Lower heat to medium and stir until boiling. Then cover and turn on low to keep the soup bubbling lightly. Simmer for about 40 minutes.
  • Add the pearl onions and prunes, cover again and cook for about 15 minutes. Remove the cinnamon sticks, bay leaf, and thyme sprigs and stir in the vinegar. Turn off heat.
  • Stir the corn starch into some water, and add to soup, stirring until slightly thickened.
  • Serve with crusty bread.

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