A closeup of a bowl of beef stew.
The Secret Ingredient That Adds An Umami Punch To Beef Stew
By Riya Anne Polcastro
Although anchovies aren't everyone's favorite ingredient, it only takes a couple of little fishies to bring a salty, briny, umami flavor to a batch of stew without overpowering it.
It's important to use oil-packed anchovies, as those packed in salt are dried out and will have to be soaked to rid them of their extra sodium.
The oil-packed anchovies will help transport more of their umami flavor to your stew, and before long, you won't even be able to tell that there are fish in the stew's base.
After letting the veggies sauté for a while, add the anchovies to the pot at the same time as the tomato paste. Make sure to let the anchovies break down, stirring as necessary.
Continue your recipe as usual, and freeze the leftover anchovies for long-term storage or keep them in the refrigerator for up to a few months, packed in plenty of oil.