So, I’m starting a new series inspired by some of my favorite makeup blogs and vlogs. ItsJudyTime does the most wonderful YouTube videos where she tests out a product for the first time. It gives viewers a unique look into what it is like to use that product…for the first time The first impression of any product often yields the more honest opinions since the expectations have yet to be set. Where I’m not totally adventurous in trying new products from the beauty aisle, I am always trying new things from the food store.
For my inaugural post, I’m testing out McCormick’s Gourmet Recipe and Seasoning Mix. It is exactly what it says it is…a mix of different spices and seasonings combined with a unique recipe.
I picked up the Tuscan Beef Stew variety. This particular has a blend of Onion, Spices (Including Rosemary, Black Pepper And Parsley), Sea Salt, Garlic, Sugar, Sun Dried Tomato, Red Bell Pepper, Sunflower Oil And Salt.
All of the ingredients are listed on the back in an easy to read format. They were simple ingredients and easy to find in my chain food store. The include the mix (duh), olive oil, beef stew cubes (my butcher had this packaged cubed and ready to go), flour, carrots, onion, diced tomatoes, beef stock, and cannelloni beans. Typically, I don’t like recipes with more than five ingredients, but these were so common I already had many of them at home. I only had to buy the mix, beef and cannelloni beans.
Following the recipe was super simple. In the most basic sense you just brown the meat in olive oil, sprinkle with flour, and toss in veggies, canned goods, stock and spice mix. Then just let it do it’s magic…for an hour. It really is that easy.
If you are a more advanced cook, I would suggest a few things when cooking…
- let the meat brown well. This will develop the flavors of the meat and help it stand up to the long cooking time.
- let the carrots and onions develop a little color, too. toss them after the first side of the beef has browned.
- let the flour cook for just a minute before adding any wet ingredients. stir well. this will cook out the flour taste.
- let the spices hit the heat dry before adding wet ingredients. this will develop their flavors and wake them up.
- after the hour is over, remove the lid and let some of the liquid evaporate. i like a thick stew!
The flavors were very well developed and the stew tasted very good. The tomatoes and rosemary gave it a quintessential tuscan flavor. I did miss the potato aspect of a traditional stew, but the cannelloni beans were a worthy substitute and really drove home the tuscan theme.
This mix has no fat and only 15 calories per serving. I found it to be a great way to add a punch of flavor to my stew without having to buy, use up, or measure a bunch of individual ingredients. The recipe was easy to use and very straight forward.
All in all, I would absolutely try this again. The other flavors that McCormick offers in their Gourmet Recipe and Spice Mix that I can’t wait to try are:
You can take a look at all ten flavors that are available on McCormick’s website.
As an aside: I was not paid or given any products for this post. These opinions are all my own.