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Hearty Winter Stew

Hearty Winter Stew

Ingredients

• Pane Turano
• 3lbs boneless beef chuck, cut into 1½ inch pieces
• 2 tsp. salt
• 1 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
• 3 tbsp. olive oil
• 2 medium yellow onions, cut into 1-inch chunks
• 7 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
• 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
• 1½ tbsp. tomato paste
• ¼ cup all purpose flour
• 2 cups dry red wine
• 2 cups beef broth
• 2 cups water
• 1 bay leaf
• ½ tsp. dried thyme
• 1 tsp. honey
• 4 large carrots, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks on a diagonal
• 1 lb small white boiling potatoes, cut in half
• Fresh chopped parsley to garnish


Directions

① Preheat the oven to 325° F and set a rack in the lower middle position. Pat the beef dry and season with salt and pepper. In a large Dutch oven or heavy soup pot, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium-high heat until hot and simmering. Brown the meat in 3 batches, turning with tongs, for about 5 minutes per batch. To sear the meat properly, do not crowd the pan and let the meat develop a nice brown crust before turning with tongs. Transfer the meat to a large plate and set aside.
② Add the onions, garlic and balsamic vinegar to the pot; cook, stirring with a wooden spoon and scraping the brown bits from the bottom of the pan, for about 5 minutes. Add the tomato paste and cook for a minute more. Add the beef with its juices back to the pan and sprinkle with the flour. Stir with wooden spoon until the flour is dissolved, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the wine, beef broth, water, bay leaf, thyme and honey. Stir to loosen any brown bits from the bottom of the pan and bring to a boil. Cover the pot with a lid and transfer to the preheated oven. Braise for 2 hours.
③ Remove the pot from the oven and add the carrots and potatoes. Cover the pot and place back in the oven for an hour or more, or until the vegetables are cooked, the broth has thickened, and the meat is tender. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Serve the stew warm with Pane Turano. Garnish with fresh parsley, if desired. Note: Stew improves in flavor if prepared at least a day ahead. Reheat, covered, over medium heat or in a 350° F oven.

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