Place a medium pot on medium heat. Add oil and allow to warm up.
When oil is ready, add meat and sear the outsides of the meat, about 3-4 minutes.
Add in the rest of the ingredients except for the cornstarch and the half and half to the pot and allow the liquid to come to a boil. Once soup has come to a boil, turn down to low and allow to simmer for 10-20 minutes, or until the vegetables are fork tender and the meat reads 170°F. Stir occasionally.
In a separate small mixing bowl, whisk together the half and half and cornstarch until no lumps are present. Add to the pot slowly, stirring the stew as you add. Allow to simmer until liquid thickens, about 5 minutes. Serve immediately.