Adapted from "Best Beef Stew" recipe at Cook's Illustrate.
- 8 small garlic cloves, pressed through garlic press (about 1 T)
- 2 large anchovy fillets, minced (about 2 T)
- 1 T 365 concentrated tomato paste
- (optional) 1 tsp Umami paste
- 5 lbs boneless rib eye roast, trimmed, cut into 1 1/2 inch pieces
- Olive oil
- 1 large yellow onion, halved and cut from pole to pole into 1/8 inch thick slices
- 8 medium carrots, washed, trimmed and cut into 1 inch pieces
- 1/4 cup unbleached all purpose flour
- 3/4 bottle red wine (used a cheap organic blended red wine from Berkeley Bowl)
- 2 cups chicken broth (better than bullion, used according to recipe on jar)
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 sprigs of dried thyme
- 6 ounces salt pork
- 1 1/2 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, scrubbed, eyed and cut into 1 inch pieces
- medium bag frozen peas and pearl onions
- water as needed
- kosher salt
- ground black pepper
- brown sugar as needed (about 1 tsp - 1 T)
- Prep ingredients:
- Combine and grind in mortar and pestle: garlic, anchovies, tomato paste (and optional umami paste). Set aside.
- Cut up roast to 1 1/2 inch pieces. Set aside.
- Cut up onion. Set aside.
- Wash carrots, cut into 1 inch pieces. Set aside.
- Measure out flour. Set aside.
- Open bottle of wine. Set aside.
- Cut salt pork into small pieces (1/8" x 1/4" x 1/2 - 1"). Set aside.
- Scrub potatoes, cut and set aside (can do so under water if afraid of oxidation).
- Thaw bag of frozen peas and pearl onions.
- Assure meat is dry (can pat dry with paper towels if necessary). Heat 1 T oil in large, heavy bottomed pan (used braising pan - large and shallow), with a wok lid that fit, but can also use a dutch oven or other large deep pan with a lid. When oil is about to smoke, add beef to lightly cover bottom of pan, cover for a couple of minutes, brown, and move beef around until all sides are seared. Moderate lid to try to keep juices in but not steam the meat. A little steaming is ok. Add oil as needed and cook meat in batches, setting aside completed meat in a separate large pot if you are braising in a shallow pan, or in a bowl if you intend to most of your cooking in the pan you're searing the meat in.
- After all meat is seared and in a large, deep pan, use a cup or so of wine to deglaze the braising pan (if used). Pour wine and deglazed yumminess into pot with beef.
- On medium heat, stir from bottom. Add onion, paste in mortar and pestle and cook. Continue stirring from bottom to keep ingredients moving around.
- Add broth, salt pork and flour. Stir and allow to thicken slightly.
- Add remaining wine. Stir and cook.
- Add salt to taste. Stir and cook.
- Add potatoes and carrots, thyme, bay leaves. Cook for about 45 minutes.
- Skim excess fat from surface of stew. Taste, season with salt to taste. If too sour or tastes not mingled enough, add brown sugar, to taste (start small).
- Taste broth and test meat. When there's only a few minutes' cooking left, add peas and onions, stir, taste one last time and tweak with salt and pepper, and serve.
- Unlike original recipe, no oven.
- Makes about 8-12 servings, depending on appetite.