By Request

Betty Shimabukuro

Paniolo stew is flavored
in Tex-Mex style

The Paniolo Beef Stew served at the Hale Koa Hotel is Hawaiian in name, but not in flavor. Think of it as paniolo equals cowboy equals southwestern.

Larry Draper of Mount Vernon, Wash., asked for the recipe on behalf of his "beloved wife," who enjoyed the dish at Bibas, the casual dining restaurant in the Fort DeRussy military hotel.

Rolf Walter, the hotel's executive chef, said the dish is basically a beef stew with peppers, in a Tex-Mex style.

I've adapted the recipe from an original that serves 50. It makes a flavorful pot of stew that owes a great deal of its distinctive taste to dijon mustard.

One note: The recipe calls for 8 ounces of serrano chiles, which is a lot. Removing the seeds tames their heat, but my supermarket serranos were still pretty frisky after seeding. Adjust the amount based on the freshness of your peppers and your own tolerance, not to mention how much time you want to devote to the laborious task of seeding.

Paniolo Beef Stew

1/4 cup vegetable oil
5 pounds stew meat, cubed
1/2 cup flour
1 large onion, sliced thin
3 large tomatoes, seeded, in 1/2-inch dice
2 to 8 ounces serrano chiles, seeded and diced (use gloves when handling)
3 large cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 12-ounce can beer
2 cups water
3/4 cup dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon oregano
3/4 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt, or to taste
1 green bell pepper, julienned
1 red bell pepper julienned
1 cup frozen corn kernels, defrosted and drained
Cilantro leaves, for garnish

Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large skillet. Pat beef cubes dry and dredge in flour, shaking off excess. Brown meat on all sides, working in batches; add more oil with each batch. Place in a large pot.

Sauté onions in the same skillet until soft. Add tomatoes, chiles, garlic and brown sugar. Add beer to deglaze pan. Add mixture to meat in pot.

Add water, mustard and spices to pot and bring to a boil, stirring often. Reduce heat and simmer about 1 1/2 hours, until meat is tender. Skim fat.

Add bell peppers and corn; cook 5 more minutes. Garnish with cilantro. Serves 12.

Approximate nutritional analysis, per serving: 500 calories, 30 g total fat, 10 g saturated fat, 115 mg cholesterol, 800 mg sodium, 20 g carbohydrate, 35 g protein.

Send queries along with name and phone number to:
"By Request," Honolulu Star-Bulletin,
500 Ala Moana, No. 7-210, Honolulu 96813.
Or send e-mail to

Asterisk (*) after nutritional analyses in the
Body & Soul section indicates calculations by Joannie Dobbs of Exploring New Concepts,
a nutritional consulting firm.

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