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Sunday, January 18

Everyday Italian Expedition

image courtesy of The Food Network

Ever since I saw my first episode of Everyday Italian on the Food Network, I have been convinced that Giada and I would be friends. Each of her recipes sounds and looks delicious, and she is simply adorable. Today I decided to take a shot at her Chianti Marinated Beef Stew, and I believe Giada would have been proud.

Here's what you need:
  • 2 1/2 to 3 pound beef brisket
  • 1 (750 ml) bottle Chianti wine
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 (4-ounce) piece pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
  • 3 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1/4 cup (1 1/2 ounces) kalamata olives, halved
  • 6 ounces green beans, halved
  • 4 medium red potatoes, quartered
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 2 sage leaves
  • 1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes
  • 4 cups beef broth

Here's what you do:

Place the beef in a 13 by 9-inch glass baking dish. Pour the wine over the meat and marinate in the refrigerator for 1 1/2 hours. Turn the meat over and marinate for another 1 1/2 hours. Remove the meat from the wine and pat dry with paper towels. Reserve the wine. (I suggest chopping up the veggies at this stage to save a bit of time.)

In a large Dutch oven, heat 3 tablespoons of the oil over medium-high heat. Season the meat on all sides with salt and pepper. Using tongs, place the meat in the pan and brown on all sides, about 2 minutes each side. Remove the meat and add the remaining oil. Add the pancetta and cook, stirring frequently for 2 minutes.

Add the carrots, celery, garlic, olives, green beans, potatoes, rosemary, and sage. Cook for 3 minutes. Pour the reserved wine, tomatoes, and beef broth into the pan, scraping up the brown bits that cling to the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon.

Return the meat to the pan and bring the liquid to a boil. Cover the pan and simmer for 3 to 3 1/2 hours or until the meat is very tender.

Remove the meat and the rosemary sprigs from the stew. Place the meat on a cutting board and cut into quarters. Using 2 forks, shred the meat into bite-size pieces. Add the shredded meat to the stew and cook until warmed through, about 5 minutes.

I only had a few minor complications... the local butcher shop was closed, and Publix didn't have a brisket, so instead, I used a roast. I also left out the pancetta. I think that it would have added to the saltiness of the stew, but I was quite fine sans la pancetta. Finally, make sure to use a large dutch oven. The one I initially used was a bit too small and resulted in a slight over boil. Overall, the stew received a great response, and I will definitely be making it again. Perhaps next time I will add more carrots and olives....

copyright Hiking in Stilettos


Sean said...

That looks fantastic! Chianti has to be one of my favorite red wines to braise red meat in. Now only if I could fast forward 8 months so I can buy alcohol by myself...

paanie said...

yum yum. maybe i'll try making some on my own . . .

Ashley said...

Almost, Sean, almost. I think you would have been proud of my culinary achievement. I'll make some for our next group dinner!

XS, it was really yummy, especially in the cold Georgia weather!