Beef Stew Recipe
Preheat oven to 325°.
Heat 5 tablespoons of vegetable oil in a large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Season the beef with salt and pepper and add it to the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 8 minutes. Transfer the beef to a plate with a slotted spoon.
Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of oil from the pot, lower the heat to medium and add the onion. Cook about 5 minutes, stirring often, until light brown. Add garlic and cook 30 seconds, then return the beef to the pot and sprinkle with flour. Stir often and cook 2 minutes.
Pour 5 cups of cold water into the pot, along with the dried thyme, bay leaf and 1 teaspoon of salt and bring to a simmer. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and transfer to oven. Bake for 2 hours.
Remove the pot, stir in the carrots and potato and simmer over low heat on the stove for 25 minutes. Stir in the peas and cook 5 minutes more, then remove the bay leaf. Stir in vinegar, if desired, and season with salt and pepper.