Monday, October 31, 2011
I know some of you had snow this past weekend (in October!!), so now is the perfect time to bust out one of my all time favourite cold weather recipes. When it is cold outside, a hearty beef stew will warm you to your bones. And this beef stew will make you want to lick your bowl clean. It has a really lovely, rich flavour, because the recipe calls for veal demi-glace, which is nearly impossible to find in Canada but can be purchased at Williams-Sonoma in the US. Fortunately, Loblaw's grocery store just came out with a line of "fancy" products and one of them happens to be a porcini mushroom glaze. (Another alternative would be to reduce some balsamic vinegar).
Hearty Beef Stew
From Kim via an old Williams-Sonoma catalogue
2 lbs. small red and white pototoes, halved or quartered
3 lbs. sirloin steak, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
Salt and pepper to taste
4 oz. pancetta, cut into small pieces
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 yellow onions, coarse chopped
4 carrots, peeled and cut into rounds
3 cloves of garlic, minced
1-1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme
2 bay leaves
1 cup full-bodied red wine
1/4 cup flour
3 cups of beef stock
1 tablespoon veal demi-glace or porcini mushroom glaze
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add the potatoes and cook until they can be easily pierced with a fork. Drain and set aside.
Season beef generously with salt and pepper. In large Dutch oven over medium heat, cook pancetta for 5-7 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer to paper-towel lined plate.
Increase the heat to medium-high. Brown beef in batches, 3-5 minutes per batch. Transfer to a bowl.
Reduce heat to medium: warm oil. Sauté onions and carrots for 5-7 minutes. Add garlic, thyme, and bay leaves and sauté for 30 seconds.
Stir in flour, cook for 1-2 minutes. Add wine, stirring to scrape up the browned bits. Add stock, demi-glace or mushroom glaze, and pancetta. Bring to a simmer.
Add beef and potatoes; reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer for an hour.