Since it was still a little chilly out, a daube de boeuf seemed like the perfect use for the “beef for stew” we had from Brykill Farm.
It’s essentially a French beef stew with wine, olives and orange–easy to prepare, just give yourself some time for marinating the beef. Serves 4 with leftovers.
Daube de boeuf:
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 whole cloves
- 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
- 3 strips orange zest (2-3″ each) and 2 tablespoons juice
- I medium onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 1 stalk celery, cut into 1/2 ” slices
- 3 carrots, peeled and cut into ½’ disks
- 1 bottle red wine (Cotes de Rhone, Cotes de Provence, Burgundy — use something you would drink)
- 3 pounds stew beef (beef chuck), cut into 1 1/2″ cubes
- 3 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste (if you don’t know about tomato paste in a tube, this is the perfect use for it)
- ½ cup beef broth (chicken is ok if you don’t have beef)
- ½ cup Nicoise olives, pitted
- Salt and pepper to taste
Make a bouquet garni. Take a piece of cheesecloth big enough to hold the thyme, bay leaf, cloves, peppercorns, and orange zest and tie into a bundle. If you don’t have any cheesecloth, a coffee filter stapled shut or a tea ball will work. Put the bouquet garni, onion, garlic, celery, carrots, wine and beef in a container. Toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for 12-24 hours.
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees. Remove the meat from the marinade and pat dry. In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat add enough olive oil to cover the bottom of the pan. Brown the beef on each side (about 2 minutes a side). You may have to do this in batches, don’t crowd the pan! Set the cooked beef aside.
While the beef is browning, put the wine mixture in a large sauce pan. Bring to a boil and then turn down to low and simmer for 5 minutes. In a small cup, mix the tomato paste into the beef broth. Add to the sauté pan and stir to get all the browned bits mixed in (deglazing). Add this to the pan with the wine. Stir in the meat and the olives. Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat.
Cover the pot and put in the oven. Cook 2 hours (if the daube starts to boil in the oven, reduce the oven temperature to 275). After 2 hours stir in the orange juice and add salt and pepper if needed. Cook until beef is very tender, about another 30 minutes. Serve over gnocchi, or noodles and enjoy!
My verdict: Really good! There was a little too much orange juice (I probably used more than 2 tablespoons). The next time, I might only cook it for 2 hours, not sure that the additional 30 minutes added anything, but it did give me time to make the gnocchi.