3 teaspoons olive oil, divided
1 pound beef stew meat, visible fat removed
1 cup chopped onion
1 clove garlic, minced
2 1/2 cups homemade beef stock or canned unsalted chicken stock
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
1 bay leaf
4 medium red potatoes (about 1 pound) cut in 1-inch chunks
2 large carrots, sliced 1/4-inch thick (about 2 cups)
2 celery stalks, sliced 1/2-inch thick (about 1 1/2 cups)
2 1/2 Tablespoons flour
1/4 cup stock
Begin by heating 2 teaspoons of oil in a large sauté pan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Proceed to brown the meat on one side for a duration of 5 minutes without turning it over. Sprinkle the meat with salt and pepper.
Next, turn the meat over and add 1 teaspoon of oil, continuing to brown it for an additional 2-3 minutes. Sprinkle the meat with salt and pepper once again. It is important to avoid overcrowding the meat, and if necessary, brown it in two separate batches.
Once all the meat has been browned and is in the pan, reduce the heat to medium. Add the onion and garlic, cooking and stirring for 2-3 minutes until the onion is browned.
Proceed to add the stock, salt, thyme, and bay leaf. Ensure that the meat is fully submerged in the liquid, adding more stock if necessary to cover it.
Bring the mixture to a boil, then cover, reduce the heat, and allow it to simmer for a duration of 2 hours. It is advisable to check on the stew occasionally during this time.
After the 2-hour mark, stir in the potatoes, carrots, and celery, and bring the mixture to a boil once again. Cover the pan and allow the vegetables to simmer for 10-15 minutes, or until they are fully cooked.
In a separate bowl, combine the flour with 1/4 cup of stock or water, whisking until there are no lumps. Stir this mixture into the stew and continue cooking for an additional 5 minutes, or until the stew has thickened.