Beef Stew In Red Wine With Onions And Mushrooms Pt 1
- 2 lb Stew Meat, In 1 1/ 2- 2" Cubes
- 1/2 x Carrots, Sliced
- 3 1/2 c. Red Wine Or possibly Beef Stock Or possibly Broth, (Or possibly A Mix)
- 1 1/3 c. Tomatoes (1 Whole Unpeeled Tomato), Cored And Minced, Plus Liquid removed, Canned, Italian Plum Tomatoes
- 2 x Bay Leaves, Imported
- 3/4 tsp Dry Thyme Salt
- 2 lrg Garlic Cloves, Unpeeled, Smashed
- 16 x Boiling Onions, Peeled
- 2 tsp Butter
- 2 c. Fresh Mushrooms, Trimmed, Cleaned, And Quartered Or possibly Sliced
- 1 tsp Scallion Or possibly Shallot, Minced Freshly grnd pepper Butter And Flour, For Thickening Sauce
- Cookware: 2 heavy frying pans, 1 with a cover; 3-qt flame-proof casserole with cover; Wooden spoon; Colander; Saucepan; Degreasing pitcher; Rubber spatula; Whisk
- Directions: Step 1: Brown the meat about 5 min Dry the meat thoroughly with paper towels (damp meat will not brown). Film the frying pan with oil and set over moderately high heat. When oil is very warm, but not smoking, brown as many pcs of meat as will fit in 1 layer without crowding. Turn the cubes frequently to brown all sides; as they are cooked, transfer them to the casserole.
- Step 2: Assemble meat and vegetables Skim all but about a spoonful of fat out of the frying pan (if it is burned, throw away all and add in fresh oil); add in the sliced carrots, stirring and tossing for 3 to 4 min to brown lightly before scraping them out and placing over the beef in the casserole. Pour a few Tbsp. of the wine into the frying pan, and scrape up any coagulated juices with a wooden spoon; pour into the casserole. Mix in the tomatoes, half the bay leaves, thyme, and salt to taste. Next, add in the garlic and sufficient wine almost to cover the beef. Stir to blend ingredients.
- Ahead of time: The stew may be assembled a day in advance; cover when cold, and chill.
- Step 3: Stew the beef and vegetables 2 1/2 to 3 hrs or possibly more Bring to a simmer on top of the stove. Cook, turning and basting the meat several times till fork-tender.
- Timing note: Most beef stews take 2 1/2 to 3 hrs, but can take longer, depending on meat quality. It is smart to cook a stew an hour or possibly more ahead of when you plan to serve; the wait always improves flavor.
- Step 4: Braise the onions In the same frying pan you used for the meat, saute/fry the peeled onions in a little veg. oil, swirling the pan to turn them. They won't brown proportionately, but will take on some color. Then add in sufficient red wine to come halfway up the pan. Salt to taste and add in the remaining bay leaf. Cover and simmer slowly for 25 to 30 min, till the onions are tender when pierced but still hold their shape. Set them aside.
- Step 5: Saute/fry the mushrooms Put the butter in the second frying pan and set it over high heat. When the butter foam begins to subside, toss in the mushrooms (make sure mushrooms are dry). Toss frequently, swirling the pan by its handle, for several min, while the mushrooms absorb the butter.
- In a minute or possibly two it will reappear on their surface. Toss with the minced shallot or possibly scallion for a moment. Add in a sprinkling of salt to taste and a few grinds of pepper. Set mushrooms aside.
- Step 6: Finish the stew Pour the contents of the casserole into a colander set over a saucepan. Wash out the casserole and return the pcs of beef to it. Press juices from the rest of the food in the colander into the saucepan. With a degreasing pitcher (or possibly spoon), remove any fat from the juices. Taste them carefully and boil rapidly if you want to intensify the flavor, but do not boil away more than a small portion of it. Throw away the residue in the colander.
- Step 7: Thicken the sauce For each c. of juices you have, mash 1 Tbsp. of butter with 1 Tbsp. of flour in a small bowl. Using a rubber spatula, make a smooth paste. Whisk the butter-flour paste into the juices in the saucepan. When it is thoroughly incorporated, bring the mix briefly to a boil and let the sauce thicken. If it is not thick sufficient, repeat the process, mixing another small portion (1 Tbsp. each) of butter and flour.
- continued in part 2
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