I am finally posting this recipe, I think I have mentioned Bon Jon a couple times, but have never posted it.
This is a family recipe that is in the top 20 of most made dinners. It is a Iranian dish that started with my Grandma Pope (who is not Iranian, but lived in Iran for 3 years) Think of it as a Persian version of beef berginion, but not anything like it. It is my dad's favorite meal in the whole world, and its definitely in my top five. That being said, you might be quite disappointed if you don't like "ethnic tasting foods". This is a slow cooker, and and equally be done in a crock pot, I use the oven.
note: in the photos I am doing a double batch. this stuff freezes great so I always do double!
2-3 lbs stew beef
1 eggplant, peeled and diced into 1 inch cubes
1 large onion, diced
2 cloves garlic minced
4 bay leaves
2 t cinnamon
2 t turmeric
1 t curry powder
1 t beef base
2 large cans diced tomatoes
salt and pepper
Lay out your stew beef on some paper towels and allow it to come to room temperature before you brown it.
Brown the meat on high heat. Season each batch with kosher salt and fresh ground pepper. I only brown one side because I think that is all you need. Don't crowd the pan, do the meat in batches.
After all the meat is browned add a cup-ish of water to the bottom of the pan, along with the teaspoon of beef base. Stir to get the brown bits of the bottom of the pan. Pour off the liquid onto the meat that you have set aside.
Saute the onions (add a little oil to the pan). Season with salt and pepper. Cook until they become fragrant.
Add eggplant and garlic to the pan and saute a little longer. Season with salt and pepper.
Return meat with drippings to the pan with the onions and eggplant. Add tomatoes and all remaining spices. Season with a little more salt and pepper.
Stir everything together. Cover and put in the oven to slow cook. Time and temperatures depend on the time you have. At minimum cook at 325 for 3 hours. I cooked this batch at 275 for 6 hours. Low and slow is the best. This is what it looks like when it is done.
Serve over rice.