We love make ahead meals, and anything with the word braised in it as it can only mean one thing, LOTS of flavour. Red wine braised beef a la Julia Child is a classic recipe which belongs in any repertoire. We add our take by topping it off with a zesty, fresh gremolata- a fresh herb condiment that brightens the dish in a very refreshing way.
PHOTOGRAPHY: DAN ROBB/ PROP STYLING: JANE HARDIN
2lbs stewing beef, cut into large chunks
2 Tbsp all purpose flour
2 carrots, peeled and diced
1 onion, peeled and diced
2 celery stalks, diced
5 garlic cloves
2 Tbsp tomato paste
500ml good quality red wine
500ml low sodium beef stock
1 28oz tin whole plum tomatoes, drained from their juice
1 bunch Parsley
4 sprigs fresh thyme
2 Bay leaves
1/2 lemon, zest and juice
Kosher Salt and Ground black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 350F/ 180C. In a large heavy bottomed pot over medium heat, add the oil. Season the beef and lightly coat with flour, dusting off excess. Brown the meat for 3-4 minutes per side until golden and caramelized. Remove and set aside.
2. Reduce the heat slightly, add the carrots, onion, celery and 4 garlic cloves to the same pan. Cook for 6-8 minutes until they soften, stirring often. Add the tomato paste and cook for another minute.
3. Deglaze with the red wine, scraping any bits that may have stuck to the bottom of the pot. Add the beef broth and tinned tomatoes. Gently place the beef back into the pan, topping up with water if needed. Season with salt and pepper.
4. Using a piece of kitchen twine, tie half the bunch of parsley with the thyme and bay leaves. Nestle the bunch of herbs into the stew.
5. Take a piece of parchment paper and run it under water, squeezing out the excess. Place directly on top of the stew and cover with the lid.
6. Bring to the boil then place in the oven for 2.5 hours, until the meat is tender and flaking apart.
7. To make the gremolata, finely chop the remaining parsley leaves and place into a bowl. Finely grate the garlic and stir through along with the lemon zest and juice. Season with salt and pepper.
8. Serve the beef with your favourite potatoes, topped with gremolata.