Slow Cooker Vietnamese Beef Shank Stew Recipe

by katerina on May 13, 2011

Pho is a current addiction of mine, I can’t seem to go a week without indulging in the highly fragrant vietnamese noodle soup. Those same aromatics inspired this beef shank stew.

Crockpot Beef Stew

The key ingredients here are the anise, ginger, cloves and cardamom. Don’t skip the step of charring the onion and ginger as they become nice and mellow that way. If you can’t find beef shank then any beef stew cut will do, I like the shank because of the marrow and gelatin you get from the bones. If you don’t serve the shank on the bone, scoop out the marrow and spread it on a bit of bread, it’s delicious. Just trust me on this one.

Print Recipe

Crockpot Vietnamese Beef Stew

(serves 4)

3 beef shanks (bone in)
salt and fresh pepper
3 tablespoons flour
2 teaspoons oil
1 large onion
1 1" piece ginger
2 green cardamom pods
1 tablespoon fish sauce
1 tablespoon brown sugar
3 whole cloves
3 star anise
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup beef stock
1 handful mixed fresh herbs (ideally cilantro, parsley, mint and basil)

Pat the shanks dry and sprinkle both sides with salt and pepper. Gently coat the shanks in flour.

Heat a large skillet to medium and add the oil. Brown shanks on both sides and remove to a plate. If you have some nice sucs on the bottom of the pan, feel free to deglaze with your beef stock and reserve it.

Remove the paper skin from the onion and cut in half. You want to char the onion and the ginger, you can do this either over an open flame on a gas stove, a grill, or under the broiler. You want to see some black char on both side of the onion as well as the ginger.

Once charred, cut the onion halves into large chunks, and the ginger into thick slices. Scatter on the bottom of your slow cooker. Add the cardamom, fish sauce, sugar, cloves, star anise, salt and beef stock. Lay the beef shanks on top and cover. Cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 2-3 hours.

Remove the shanks from the crockpot and strain the rest to give you a broth. If necessary, put the broth in a sauce pan and simmer to reduce until as thick as desired. Serve with rice or crusty French bread and the fresh herbs.


Prep Time: 15 minutes | Cooking Time: 240 minutes | Total Time:255 minutes


{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

Belinda @zomppa May 13, 2011 at 7:52 am

This slow-cooked stew looks like just a huge bowl of comfort. Delicious comfort.

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Kathy May 13, 2011 at 8:32 am

What if you can not find cardamom pods? What would YOU use in place?

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katerina May 13, 2011 at 10:04 am

Belinda – something for the May showers you know?

Kathy – for this I would probably just omit. For some recipes where it is more important try ordering online?

Reply

Linn September 5, 2012 at 7:17 pm

Is there anything I can use in place of the fish sauce?

Reply

katerina September 5, 2012 at 8:41 pm

@Linn – do you not have any\can’t find it or have an allergy? Other dried fish products would probably work, or maybe a light soy as it is very salty.

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