Braising meat is a technique of slow cooking meat in a broth until it creates a rich sauce and tender meat. It is a great way to cook tough meat and add loads of flavor. The hardest part of this dish is smelling all the wonderful smells in your home and not being able to enjoy it for several hours. Yes, several hours! That is the hard but most important part. You are cooking it at a low temperature for a long time. This slow cooking breaks down the hard chewy parts of tough meat leaving behind a tender juicy meat. It is important to use a good heavy pot with a lid. It doesn’t have to be the name brand enamel pot, but it does need to be oven safe with a lid. Any cast iron Dutch oven will work. I got my La Creuset pot as a gift years ago when I broke a ceramic Dutch oven that I had used for multiple meals weekly.
Prepping this dish was really easy, because I keep a lot of the ingredients on hand all the time. I got this beautiful stew meat from Frost Lane Farm. One of our local farmers that brings meat to our farmer’s market in town. As for the wine you need a red wine that isn’t sweet, since you are making a savory dish. I don’t drink, but love to cook with different alcohols. It adds a depth of flavor you can’t achieve without it, and the great thing is if you store it in a cool dark area it will keep for later use. Because I don’t know the tastes of each brand, I have to rely on suggestions from friends and my local store.
Don’t forget these techniques when making this dish:
- Dry your meat with a paper towel and don’t overcrowd when searing the meat. You only want to brown the outside.
- Don’t clean out the browned bits left after searing meat. That adds flavor!
- Use a good red wine that isn’t sweet.
- Using an oven safe heavy pot with lid (like a cast iron Dutch oven) is essential!
- Don’t rush the process! Cooking low and slow allows tenderness and rich flavor.
One last tip for this dish is to add carrots. I didn’t have any when I was taking pictures and decided to leave them out of the dish recipe. You however can add them and eliminate the need to cook anything on the side. Simply peel and cut into large chunks rough 3-4 carrots. Add them to the pot with the broth before covering the lid. You will then cook in the oven as the recipe says. You could also add sauteed mushrooms and pearl onions for an alternative addition. We made this dish to go with the viral 15-hour potatoes. We wanted a dish that would be rich and filling, but also pair well with the crispy fried potatoes. Try them or possibly my parmesan crusted potatoes.
Add your favorite vegetable and Enjoy!
Braised Beef Stew Meat
- Beef stew meat
- ½ lg onion diced
- 4 garlic cloves minced
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 3 Tbsp tomato paste
- 1 ½ cup red wine
- 3 cups beef broth
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 Tbsp paprika
- 3 small sprigs of fresh thyme
- 3-4 bay leaves
- Prep meat by placing on a sheet and dabbing off any excess moisture with a paper towel and sprinkling salt and pepper over top. Heat the olive oil in your Dutch oven (any oven safe dish with a lid) Brown the outside of each piece of meat then set aside. Don’t overcrowd your pan or they will release too much moisture and not brown as well. After the meat is completely browned add a little olive oil to the same pan and then the onion and garlic. Don’t clean the pan first! You want all the bits at the bottom from cooking the meat. This adds flavor to the dish. Sautee for a minute or two then add your tomato paste. Continue sauteing for roughly two minutes, then add your wine. Cook the wine stirring constantly and helping to mix any bits cooked down to the bottom. Add the beef broth, browned stew meat, paprika, thyme, and a pinch of salt and pepper. Cover with the lid and place in a heated 325’F oven. Cook covered for about an hour. Lower the oven to 280’F and continue cooking with the lid off. The broth will continue to thicken during this time. Cook for about two to three hours uncovered. Be sure to check after each hour. Once only about an inch of broth is left on the bottom it is done. This meal goes great with your favorite potato dish and vegetables.