Wine Wednesday: Beef Stew in Red Wine Sauce

It’s cold and what I need is something to warm me up and feed my soul. This does both. I mean what’s better than a rich beef stew and wine? Love them both. This also makes my house smell really good. I think I’ll save some for the BF…I think he’ll like it too. While this does require wine, get an inexpensive bottle of dry red wine. DON’T use your good stuff as it will just burn off and wouldn’t you rather drink it?heartystew

Beef Stew in Red Wine Sauce

  1. 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  2. 2 tablespoons olive oil
  3. 2 pounds trimmed beef flatiron steak or chuck, cut into 8 pieces
  4. Salt
  5. Freshly ground black pepper
  6. 1 cup finely chopped onion
  7. 1 tablespoon finely chopped garlic
  8. 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  9. One 750-milliliter bottle dry red wine
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 thyme sprig
  • One 5-ounce piece of pancetta
  • 15 pearl or small cipollini onions, peeled
  • 15 cremini mushrooms
  • 15 baby carrots, peeled
  • Sugar
  • Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350°. In a large enameled cast-iron casserole, melt the butter in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Arrange the meat in the casserole in a single layer and season with salt and pepper. Cook over moderately high heat, turning occasionally, until browned on all sides, 8 minutes. Add the chopped onion and garlic and cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the onion is softened, 5 minutes. Add the flour and stir to coat the meat with it. Add the wine, bay leaves and thyme, season with salt and pepper and bring to a boil, stirring to dissolve any brown bits stuck to the bottom of the pot.

Cover the casserole and transfer it to the oven. Cook the stew for 1 1/2 hours, until the meat is very tender and the sauce is flavorful.

Meanwhile, in a saucepan, cover the pancetta with 2 cups of water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Drain the pancetta and slice it 1/2 inch thick, then cut the slices into 1-inch-wide lardons.

In a large skillet, combine the pancetta, pearl onions, mushrooms and carrots. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil, 1/4 cup of water and a large pinch each of sugar, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, cover and simmer until almost all of the water has evaporated, 15 minutes. Uncover and cook over high heat, tossing, until the vegetables are tender and nicely browned, about 4 minutes.

To serve, stir some of the vegetables and lardons into the stew and scatter the rest on top as a garnish. Top with a little chopped parsley and serve.

Suggested Pairing

Robust, dark-fruited Cabernet Sauvignon.

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