Beef Stew with Red Wine
- SERVINGS: 8
Like most long-simmered dishes, this satisfying stew tastes even better the second or third day after it is made.
- 3 1/2 tablespoons pure olive oil
- 4 pounds boneless beef chuck, cut into 2 1/2 -inch cubes
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2 medium onions, coarsely chopped
- 3 cups full-bodied red wine, preferably Italian
- 3 sage leaves
- 2 whole cloves
- 1 bay leaf
- Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large enameled cast-iron casserole. Add one-third of the meat and season with salt and pepper, then brown well on all sides over moderately high heat, about 5 minutes; adjust the heat if the bits on the bottom of the casserole get too dark. Transfer the meat to a plate. Repeat 2 more times, using 1 tablespoon of olive oil and half of the remaining meat for each batch.
- When all of the meat has been browned, add the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of olive oil to the casserole. Add the onions and cook, stirring, over moderate heat until softened but not browned, about 5 minutes. Add 1/4 cup of the wine and simmer, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pot, until the wine is almost evaporated, about 2 minutes. Repeat 3 more times, adding 1/4 cup of the wine each time and using a total of 1 cup of wine.
- Return the meat to the casserole and add the remaining 2 cups of wine, the sage, cloves and bay leaf. Cover and simmer over low heat until the meat is very tender, about 2 hours. Skim the stew and season with salt and pepper. Remove the sage, cloves and bay leaf and serve the stew in shallow bowls.
Try an Italian red from Falerno del Massico.