Tuscan beef stew
1kg Casserole Beef (see Beef cuts below)
2-3 tbsp Olive oil
1 large Onion, diced
3 cloves Garlic, thinly sliced
1 tbsp Plain flour
1 tbsp Tomato paste
1.5 cups Beef stock
2-3 Medium sized sprigs of fresh rosemary
400g can Diced tomatoes
2/3 cup Green or black olives
2 small Zucchini, cut into 1.5cm thick slices
Creamy polenta and braised baby carrots, to serve
- Preheat oven to 180°C. Cut Beef into 2.5cm-3cm cubes. Season with salt and pepper, add 2 tbsp oil, and mix well. Heat a large frypan over a medium-high heat. Brown the Beef in 2 or 3 batches. Remove each batch and place in a casserole dish.
- Reduce heat, add a little oil and onion to the frypan. Cook for 1–2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and stir for 1 minute more.
- Add the flour and tomato paste, stir until the onion is coated. Gradually pour in the stock, stirring until the mixture boils. Pour over the Beef in a casserole dish, add the rosemary, and stir to combine.
- Cover the casserole dish, place in oven, and cook until the Beef is just tender, then add the tomatoes, olives and zucchini, cook for 20 minutes more. Stir casserole every 40 minutes or so, add water if needed to keep the ingredients just covered.
- Beef casserole cuts and approximate cooking times : Chuck or boneless shin/gravy beef - 2 to 2½ hours, Topside, round, blade - 1 to 1½ hours
- Browning is crucial. Don’t rush the initial stage of browning the beef, it’s important to brown it in small batches to maximise colour and taste. Remember the better it browns, the better the flavour.