Combine the salt, paprika, cayenne, garlic powder, onion powder, cumin, basil, thyme, peppers, and oregano in a small bowl.
Take 1 teaspoon of the seasoning mix and rub it over the meat.
In a 5 1/2 quart saucepan, heat 1/4 lb of butter over high heat until about half melted. Add meat and cook until meat is well browned and sediment on bottom of pan is continuously building up, about 13 minutes, scraping bottom of pan occasionally. Remove from heat. With a slotted spoon, transfer meat and any very brown bits to a bowl and set aside.
Return pan to high heat and add remaining butter and 3/4 cup onions, scraping up all browned sediment, then stirring occasionally.
Stir in 1/2 cup celery.
Add flour, stirring until well-blended. Cook about 2 minutes, stirring and scraping frequently.
Stir in tomatoes, garlic and 2 tablespoons of seasoning mix. Cook about 4 minutes, stirring and scraping.
Add 1/2 cup stock and stir and scrape until browned sediment is dissolved.
Add 1/2 cup more stock and the remaining seasoning mix. Cook about 2 minutes, stirring and scraping frequently.
Add remaining stock and stir and scrape well.
Return meat to pot and add sherry. Bring to a boil, stirring and scraping frequently.
Reduce heat and simmer about 15 minutes, stirring and scraping occasionally.
Add remaining onions and celery. Continue to cook until meat is tender, about 30 minutes more, stirring and scraping occasionally.