As nights get nippy, take comfort in a hearty casserole, perfect for warming up your midweek, without breaking a sweat!
The ingredient of Basic beef and red wine casserole
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 4 bacon rashers, trimmed, chopped
- 1 large brown onion, chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 kg beef chuck steak, trimmed, cut into 3cm cubes
- 2 tablespoons plain flour
- 250mls (1 cup) dry red wine
- 375mls (1 1/2 cups) Massel beef stock
- 1 x 400g can peeled whole tomatoes, undrained, mashed
- 3 medium (about 300g) carrots, diagonally sliced
- Salt & ground black pepper
- 1/2 cup chopped fresh continental parsley
- Boiled or mashed potato, to serve
The instruction how to make Basic beef and red wine casserole
- Preheat oven to 160u00b0C. Measure and prepare all your ingredients. There is much confusion about the difference between a casserole, a stew and a braised dish. These three terms are often used indiscriminately as they all refer to cooking food slowly in liquid in a covered container. After much research, I came to the conclusion that for a casserole, as it is most universally recognised, the food (namely meat) is browned first on the stove top and then simmered with other ingredients in the oven. For a stew, the food is not browned first before it is simmered on the stove top. To braise, the food is browned first and . then simmered on the stove top. Usually, less liquid is used when braising.
- To cook the casserole, you will need a large, heavy-based ovenproof saucepan or flameproof casserole dish with a lid. An enamelled cast iron pan is ideal as it can be used on both the stove top and in the oven and distributes and holds heat well. There are also many suitable flameproof casserole dishes made of earthenware, glass or ceramic available. If you dont have a saucepan or casserole dish that can be used both on the stove top and in the oven, dont worry. Just transfer the mixture from one to the other after bringing it to the boil in step 5.
- Heat 2 teaspoons of the olive oil in a large, heavy-based ovenproof saucepan or flameproof casserole dish over medium-low heat and cook the bacon for 3 minutes. Add the onion and cook for 5 minutes or until the onion is soft. Add garlic and cook for a further minute or until aromatic. Remove the bacon mixture from the pan/dish and set aside.
- Add 1/2 the remaining oil to the saucepan or casserole dish over medium-high heat and cook 1/2 the beef for 1-2 minutes, tossing occasionally, or until browned. Browning the meat will start to develop the flavour as well as add colour to the casserole. Sprinkle the meat with 1/2 the flour and cook for a further minute. The flour is used to thicken the sauce as it cooks. If you dont cook the flour at this stage before adding the other ingredients, an unpleasant raw or floury flavour will be left in the casserole.
- Remove the beef from the pan/dish and set aside. Repeat with the remaining oil, beef and flour. Remove the beef from the pan/dish and set aside.
- Add the wine to the pan/dish and bring to the boil over medium-high heat. Cook for 1 minute, scraping the base with a wooden spoon to dislodge any residue left on the base of the pan/dish. This is called deglazing. The tasty bits that have accumulated on the base of the pan/dish are incorporated into the sauce in which the meat and vegetables will be cooked, thus adding to the flavour of the casserole.
- Return the onion mixture and the beef to the pan/dish. Add the stock, mashed tomatoes and carrots, and stir to combine. Bring to the boil over high heat.
- Cover the pan/dish and cook in preheated oven for 2 hours or until the beef is very tender. An oven temperature of 160u00b0C will ensure the casserole simmers steadily. It is important that it doesnt boil rapidly as the meat will become very tough and stringy. Long, slow cooking of the casserole ensures that the meat is tender and the sauces develop a full-bodied, rich flavour.
- The main advantage of cooking a dish like this in the oven, as opposed to on the stove top as with a stew, is that there is no chance of the ingredients sticking and burning on the base of the pan/dish.
- Remove the pan/dish from the oven and use a large metal spoon to skim any excess fat from the surface of the casserole. Season with salt and pepper and then stir through the parsley. Serve with boiled or mashed potato.
Nutritions of Basic beef and red wine casserolefatContent: 619.249 calories
saturatedFatContent: 30 grams fat
carbohydrateContent: 9 grams saturated fat
sugarContent: 16 grams carbohydrates
fibreContent: 10 grams sugar
cholesterolContent: 63 grams protein
sodiumContent: 181 milligrams cholesterol