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How to Slow Cook Tuscan Beef Stew (Peposo)

How to Slow Cook Tuscan Beef Stew (Peposo)


By Jeff Baker

"Having begun his career in a professional kitchen in 1983, Jeff Baker has since cooked for the Queen, and worked alongside some of the world’s top chefs, such..."


Traditional cook: Serves 6 to 8 / prep 10 mins / cook 4 hours / easy

Slow cooker: Serves 6 to 8 / prep 10 mins / cook 8 hours / easy

A classic Tuscan stew perfect for the colder months, it’s really simple and can pair with many side dishes from soft and creamy polenta, fresh potato or pumpkin gnocchi or even some simple Cia batta.

The key ingredients are red wine and rosemary along with a classic soffrito made up of aromatic vegetables and slowly cooked in olive oil. The option of adding pulses will make this slow cook stretch even further and the beans pair perfectly with the rich gravy.

Traditional Method
  1. Heat the oven to 150°C /130°C fan assisted (gas 2).
  2. Season the meat, then brown all over in a large casserole with a little olive oil.
  3. Take out the meat then cook the onions, celery, carrot and garlic until softened in a little olive oil.
  4. Add the tomato puree then the wine and bring to the boil then add the beef stock and rosemary bring back to a simmer and thicken with the corn flour mix.
  5. Add the beef back to the pan and bring to a simmer.
  6. Cover with a lid and place in the oven and cook for 4 hours until the meat starts to fall apart.
  7. Pull the meat into chunks and stir through the gravy, add the pulses and reheat thoroughly.
Slow Cooker Method

  1. Prepare the slow cooker to first sear the meat and vegetables. If this function not available simply use a frying pan for the first stages.
  2. Take out the meat then cook the onions, celery, carrot and garlic until softened in a little olive oil.
  3. Add the tomato puree then the wine and bring to the boil, then add the beef stock and rosemary and bring back to a simmer then thicken with the corn flour mix.
  4. Add the beef back to the pan, close the lid and cook for 6 hours on the high setting.
  5. Pull the meat into chunks and stir through the gravy, add the pulses and reheat thoroughly.
To serve
  • Spoon the meat and gravy over a plate of soft polenta and finish with black pepper and freshly grated Parmesan.
  • This also goes well tossed with gnocchi finished with black pepper, both served with a glass of Chianti.

Creamy Polenta

Cook 30 mins ∙ serves 4 / easy

Method
  1. Bring milk, water, butter and seasoning to simmer.
  2. Whisk in semolina.
  3. Cook on a low heat stirring regularly for 30 minutes until rich and creamy.
  4. Fold through grated Parmesan.

  • The Ingredients
  • for the beef stew
  • 1kg beef shin, off the bone
  • Olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 2 sticks celery, finely chopped
  • 2 carrot, finely chopped
  • 6 fat cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 250ml chianti or robust red wine
  • 1 tbsp. tomato purée
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary leaves chopped
  • 250ml beef stock
  • Sea salt & cracked black pepper to season
  • 2 tsp. Corn flour mixed with equal quantity cold water
  • 1 tins cannellini beans (drained) (optional)
  • Soft polenta or gnocchi, to serve
  • for Creamy Polenta
  • 250ml milk
  • 150ml water
  • 50g butter
  • 100g polenta (centaur)
  • 35grams Parmesan
  • Salt pepper nutmeg

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