Provencale Beef Stew

On November 14, 2011, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
4

In 1993 I took a French Bistro Cooking class that was taught by one of the chefs from The Heathman Restaurant & Bar.  It was my first cooking class that led to many other classes that summer.  Oddly, the thing I remember most about this particular class was my “helping” with cleanup and rinsing a Heinkel chef knife and placing it in the dishwasher. The instructor freaked out on me and scolded me for putting a fine kitchen knife in the dishwasher. She was right, but as a 21 year old guy whose parents idea of a quality knife was a Ginsu knife set, I had no idea.

 

Fortunately, I walked away that evening with a quality beef stew recipe that also serves as the foundation for a great macaroni gratin dish too (more on that recipe tomorrow.)

 

Daube De Boeuf A La Provencale (Provencale Beef Stew)
Serves 6-8

3 lbs. stew meat (beef round or chuck)

Marinade:
4 carrots, peeled and cut into thick ‘half moons’
3 onions, coarsely chopped
6 garlic cloves, peeled
1 rib celery, thickly sliced
4 sprigs fresh parsley
3 bay leaves
1 Tbsp. fresh thyme, or 1 tsp. dried
1/3 cup brandy
1 bottle robust red wine (Cote du Provence, Cote du Rhone, Minervoise or Languedoc)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. whole black peppercorns
2 whole cloves

3 Tbsp. butter
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1 lb. mushrooms
2 Tbsp. tomato paste
grated zest and juice of 1 orange
salt and pepper

The day before serving the stew, in a large non reactive bowl, combine the marinade ingredients.  The peppercorns and cloves may be tied in a cheesecloth to remove before serving, if desired.  Toss well.  Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours, stirring occasionally.

Drain and reserve the liquid from the meat and vegetables.  Remove the meat from the vegetables.  Transfer the liquid and the vegetables (and the cheesecloth, if using) to a large non reactive casserole.  In a large skillet, melt the butter and olive oil over high heat.  When foam begins to subside, add half the meat.  Sauté, tossing, until browned all over, about  5 minutes.  with a slotted spoon, transfer the meat to the liquid and vegetables in the casserole.  Repeat with the remaining beef.

Stir the tomato paste into the casserole.  bring to a simmer over medium heat.  Reduce the heat to very low and simmer, skimming occasionally, until the meat is very tender, about 3 hours.  While the meat is cooking, in the same skillet in which the meat was browned, add the mushrooms and sauté over high heat until lightly browned, about 5 minutes; set aside.  When the meat is tender, (discard the cheesecloth, if using) stir in mushrooms, orange zest and juice, and salt and pepper to taste.

The recipe can be prepared 2 to 3 days in advance and refrigerated.  Reheat before serving.

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Yankee Beef Pot Roast

On October 3, 2011, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
0

A simple pot roast for football Sunday

It’s football Sunday and with the Detroit Lions facing the Dallas Cowboys, it was going to be a day of sports and it was time for something basic. Something manly. Something like meat and potatoes. So I thawed a boneless beef chuck roast I bought on my last trip to Burgundy Pasture Beef Ranch and diced some vegetables.

Yankee Beef Pot Roast

Serves 4

1 boneless beef chuck shoulder pot roast (about 2 1/2 lbs)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp black pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 cups beef broth
1 cup dry red wine
2 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
2 potatoes, medium size cut into 1 inch cubes
1 onion, cut into 1 inch pieces
3 stalks celery, cut into bite-size pieces
2 large carrots, cut into 1/2 inch rounds

Combine 1/4 cup flour, salt and pepper in a 1 gallon freezer bag, placing beef into bag. Seal and shake to coat. Meanwhile heat oil in a stock pot over medium-high heat. Place beef into stock pot and brown evenly.

Remove the chuck roast after browning

Remove beef from pot and deg-laze with red wine. Scrape up beef bits and then add beef stock, thyme and remaining flour. Whisk to combine and return beef to pot. Let it come to a boil and then reduce heat to a simmer. Cover stock pot and cook for 2 hours.

Add the vegetables to pan and then simmer covered

Add vegetables after the 2 hour simmer. Continue simmering for 45 minutes or until vegetables and pot roast are fork tender.

Serve with fresh bread.

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Jamaican Chicken Curry

On July 19, 2009, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
0


I can hardly believe it’s been two months since my last post. It must be a busy summer. Fortunately, this week I decided to catch-up on some cooking magazine reading and ventured into Martha’s Food magazine that has an excellent stew recipe in its May 2009 issue.

The following recipe has some “kick, but just enough to make it intense, yet not insane” as my wife said while we enjoyed a couple plates. Three tablespoons of Indian curry did the trick (the recipe calls for Jamaican curry but I only some hot curry powder from a local Indian market.) Also, I went with organic frozen peas that I think add a nice sweet flavor to the dish. We also spent the morning at the local Farmer’s Market and picked up some great onions, carrots and garlic – all perfect for this recipe. The carrots were like butter.

Jamaican Chicken Curry
Serves 4

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into bite-sized chunks
coarse salt and pepper
1 medium onion, rough chop
1 garlic clove, minced
1 teaspoon ground cumin
3 tablespoons curry powder
1/2 teaspoon thyme, dried
4 carrots, bite-sized sliced at an angle
1 can (13.5 oz) coconut milk
1 cup water
1 package (10 oz) frozen peas
Cooked rice for serving

In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high. Season chicken with salt and pepper. Working in two batches, brown the chicken, 3-4 minutes per side. Transfer to plate.

Reduce heat to medium. Add onion, garlic, cumin, curry, thyme and 1/2 cup water and season with pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onion has softened, 3-5 minutes.

Add carrots, frozen peas, coconut milk, 1/2 cup water and chicken with any accumulated juices. Bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover partially, and cook until chicken is cooked through and carrots are tender, about 10 minutes.

Remove from heat and serve over rice.

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Country Cider Hot-Pot

On February 23, 2009, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
0


Sunday night was a birthday party for my twin boys. We were having some family over so I decided to try something new and something that could just sit in an oven for a hour and not need a lot of attention.

The original recipe from a cookbook I own called for rabbit for this dish, I decided to go with boneless skinless chicken breast instead. Also, I found that the cider really needs to be increased about another cup (the recipe below includes the extra amount of cider so please use about 3 cups of cider, get it to where it just covers the chicken and vegetables.)

 

 

Country Cider Hot-Pot
Serves 4

2 tsp flour
4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into thirds
2 tsp butter
1 tsp olive oil
15 baby onions
4 strips of bacon, chopped
2 tsp Dijon mustard
3 cups apple cider
3 carrots, chopped
2 parsnips, chopped
12 ready-to-eat pitted prunes
1 fresh rosemary sprig
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Place the flour, salt and pepper in a plastic bag, add the chicken pieces and shake until coated. Set aside.

2. Heat the butter and oil in a flame-proof casserole and add the onions and bacon. Fry for 4-5 minutes, until the onions have softened. Remove with a straining spoon and set onions and bacon aside.

3. Fry the seasoned chicken pieces in the oil until they are browned all over, then spread a little of the mustard over the top of each piece with a spoon (doesn’t have to be perfect.)

4. Return the onions and bacon to the pan. Pour on the cider and a add the carrots, parsnips, prunes, rosemary and bay leaf. Add more cider if food is not covered with liquid. Bring to a boil, then cover and transfer to the oven. Cook for about 1 hour until tender.

5. Remove rosemary and bay leaf and serve with mash potatoes.

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Beef and Chorizo Chili Comes with a Kick

On February 13, 2009, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
2

This is a recipe from Cooking Light magazine that I had torn out of an issue years ago. The best part is a serving is only 325 calories, if you care about such things. I rarely do. I have my Wii Fit now, so I don’t have to worry about calories, right?

Calories aside, this chili recipe has a great bite from the chipotle chiles and chorizo sausage. Chorizo is probably one of my favorites, make sure you go to a good deli counter like Papa Joes.

Beef, Black Bean, and Chorizo Chili

10 servings (serving size: about 1 cup chili)

Ingredients
2 links Spanish chorizo sausage (about 6 1/2 ounces), thinly sliced
1 1/2 pounds beef stew meat
1 1/2 cups chopped onion
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 (7-ounce) can chipotle chiles in adobo sauce
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons unsweetened cocoa
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 cup dry red wine
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 (14-ounce) cans less-sodium beef broth
1 (28-ounce) can whole tomatoes, undrained and chopped
2 tablespoons masa harina
2 (15-ounce) cans pinto beans, rinsed and drained
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
Preparation
Heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add chorizo to pan; sauté 3 minutes or until browned. Remove chorizo from pan. Add half of beef to pan; sauté 5 minutes or until browned. Remove beef from pan. Repeat procedure with remaining beef. Add onion and garlic to pan; sauté 3 minutes.

Remove 4 chipotle chiles from can, and chop. Reserve remaining chiles and sauce for another use. Add chorizo, beef, chopped chiles, tomato paste, and next 6 ingredients (through ground cumin) to pan, and cook for 1 minute, stirring constantly. Stir in red wine, lime juice, beef broth, and tomatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat, and simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.

Gradually stir in masa harina. Add pinto beans and black beans; bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer 30 minutes.

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