About this recipe:My Mediterranean take on a French classic. A rich, hearty, delicious beef stew to delight all the family. Served with mash, it provides a comfort blanket second to none.
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
15g (1/2 oz) butter
450g (1 lb) diced stewing steak
200ml beef stock
45g (1 1/2 oz) cubed pancetta
12 whole shallots, peeled (or 1 onion, chopped)
1 leek, finely sliced
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely diced
1 stick celery, finely diced
2 tablespoons finely chopped red pepper
4 ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon plain flour
4 sprigs thyme
1 bay leaf
400ml red wine
salt and black pepper
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Method Prep:30min › Cook:2hr › Ready in:2hr30min
Add two tablespoons of oil and the butter to a large pot, heat to a medium high temperature and add the beef. Cook, stirring constantly, for a couple of minutes, until the cubes are browned on all sides. Remove meat and set aside and pour the juices into the stock.
Add remaining oil and gently fry the pancetta for 3 minutes until golden but not crispy. Add the shallots, leek and garlic and cook for a further 1 minute.
Add the carrot, celery, red pepper and tomatoes and continue cooking for a further 4 minutes or so until all slightly softened.
Sprinkle the flour over the mixture, stirring for a minute to mix well. Return the meat to the pot with the thyme, bay and wine. Bring to the boil and reduce the wine by about half.
Add the stock with a few turns of pepper mill, again bring to boil and then simmer for 1 to 2 hours, checking regularly after 1 1/2 hours until the beef is soft and tender. (If it becomes too thick add a little water and cover for a bit.)
Taste for seasoning and remove the thyme sprigs and bay leaf. Serve and enjoy.