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John William Tuohy lives in Washington DC

Piece de Boeuf Braisee -A la Mode (Braised Beef Pot Roast in Red Wine)



Frankly this was more trouble than it was worth but I wanted to try it and expand my cooking skills a little bit. Essentially, in the end result, what you get is pot roast just like most pot roasts.  

Ingredients
1 cup each: thinly sliced carrots, onions and celery stalks
2 halved cloves unpeeled garlic
1 Tbsp. thyme
2 bay leaves
1/4 cup minced parsley
2 whole cloves or 4 allspice berries
5 lb. piece of braising beef, trimmed and tied for cooking (okay, I didn’t tie my Rump Pot Roast)
1 Tbsp. salt
1/4 tsp pepper
5 cups of young red wine (Burgundy, Cotes du Rhone, Macon or Chianti)
1/3 cup brandy
1/2 cup olive oil
4 to 6 Tbsp. rendered pork fat or cooking oil
For body for sauce: 1 or 2 cracked veal knuckles, 1 or 2 split calf’s feet, and/or 4 to 8 oz. of fresh pork, bacon or ham rind (I used 8 oz. ham rind)
4 to 6 cups of beef stock or canned beef bouillon
1 1/2 lbs. braised carrots (see recipe and ingredients below)
24-36 small braised white onions (see recipe and ingredients below)
1 Tbsp. cornstarch or arrowroot mixed the 2 Tbs Madeira or Port
Parsley sprigs

Directions:

Place half the veggies, herbs and spices in the bottom of a large Pyrex bowl.
Rub the meat with the salt and pepper and place it over the vegetables.
Spread the rest of the veggies and herbs over the meat. Pour on the wine, brandy and olive oil.
Cover and marinate at least 6 hours. (I marinated overnight…her recommendations) Make sure you leave it in the refrigerator to marinate.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Half an hour before cooking, drain the meat on a rack. Just before browning, (keep the marinade in the bowl), dry it thoroughly with paper towels. It won’t brown if it’s damp.
Add the fat (I used oil) to a heavy enameled roaster on the stove over moderately high heat. (Use a roaster that can go in and out of the oven.)
When the oil is at the point of smoking, brown the meat on all sides. This takes about 15 minute’s total. Drain the fat.
Pour in the wine marinade and boil it down rapidly until it has reduced by half.
Then add the veal knuckles, calf’s feet and/or rind.
Pour in enough stock to come two thirds of the way up the beef.
Bring to a simmer on top of the stove.
Skim and cover tightly and set in the lower third of the preheated oven.
Regulate the heat so the liquid remains at a gentle simmer for 2 1/2 to 3 hours. The beef is done when a sharp-pronged fork will pierce it easily. (You almost can’t overcook this.  The longer it cooks, the more tender the beef. I cooked it for 3 1/2 hours.)
While the beef is being braised, braise 2 lbs. of carrots and braised small white onions (recipe below, page 483).
When the meat is tender, remove it to a platter. Discard the trussing strings. Trip off any loose fat and keep the meat warm while finishing the sauce (another 5-10 min.).
Skim the fat off the braising juices and strain them through a sieve (pronounced “siv”) into a saucepan, pressing the liquids out of the veggies.
Simmer for a minute or two, skimming, then boil rapidly until liquid is reduced to about 3 1/2 cups and full of flavor. Taste carefully for seasoning. Sauce should be slightly thickened.
In a small bowl, stir the starch and wine together until there are no lumps.
Beat into the mixture on the stove and then simmer for 3 minutes.
Then add the cooked carrots and onions and simmer for another two minutes to blend the flavors.
Remove the veggies with a slotted spoon and arrange them around the meat.
Decorate with parsley.
Pour a bit of the sauce over the meat and put the rest in a sauceboat on the table.

BRAISED CARROTS:
Ingredients:
1 1/2 lb. carrots
1 Tbsp. granulated sugar (helps them develop their flavor)
1 1/2 cups of water
1 1/2 Tbsp. butter
1/2 tsp salt
Pinch of pepper

Directions:
In a large saucepan, bring the carrots to a boil with the sugar, water, butter, and salt.
Cover and boil slowly for 30-40 minutes or until the carrots are tender and the liquid has evaporated. Correct seasoning.

BRAISED ONIONS:
Ingredients:
18-24 peeled white onions (about 1″ in diameter)
1 1/2 Tbsp. butter
1 1/2 Tbsp. oil
1/2 cup brown stock, beef bouillon, white wine, red wine OR water
Salt and pepper to taste
A medium herb bouquet – 4 parsley sprigs, 1/2 bay leaf, and 1/4 tsp thyme tied up in a cheesecloth
Directions:

When the butter and oil are bubbling in the skillet, add the onions and sauté over medium heat for about 10 minutes.
Roll the onions about so they will brown as evenly as possible. Don’t break their skins.
Pour in the liquid, season to taste, add the herb bouquet. Cover and simmer slowly for 40-50 minutes until the onions are perfectly tender, but retain their shape and the liquid has evaporated.

Remove the herb bouquet.

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