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Hearty Hunters Stew

2 tb Cooking oil
2 lb Beef chuck roast -- or venison cut in 1 inch cubes
4 1/4 c Water -- divided
1/2 c Tomato juice
2 md Onion -- cut in wedges
2 Stalks celery -- sliced
1 ts Worcestershire sauce
2 ea Bay leaves
2 ts Salt
1/2 ts Pepper
6 md Carrots -- pared & quartered
1 ea Rutabaga -- peeled & cubed
6 md Potatoes -- quartered
1 c Frozen peas
1 tb Cornstarch
Baking powder biscuits -- Optional

In a cast-iron Dutch oven, heat oil over medium. Brown meat. Add 4 cups water and scrape browned drippings loose in pan. Add tomato juice, onion, celery, worcestershire sauce, bay leaves, salt and pepper. Cover with a tight-fitting lid; reduce heat to simmer. Cook stirring occasionally, for 2 hours. Remove bay leaves and add carrots, rutabaga and potatoes. Cover and cook for an additional 40 to 60 min. Stir in the peas; cook for 10 min. Combine cornstarch with the remaining water and stir into stew. Cook and stir until thickened. Serve with baking powder biscuits, if desired. Yield: 8 servings.

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