Here is my most recent version of a wondrously rich and hearty beef dish that cooks down in an especially satisfying wine sauce or gravy. It's one of my cold weather specialties
Serving Size : 4

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 teaspoon coarse-ground black pepper
1 pound beef stew meat -- cut in 2" cubes
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 cup finely chopped onion
4 cloves garlic -- minced
2 teaspoons dried herbs de Provence
1 teaspoon dred rosemary
1 tablespoon tomato paste -- heaping
3/4 cup dry red wine
3/4 cup low sodium beef broth -- more if needed

Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Have ready an oven-proof Dutch oven or large saucepan with a tight lid.

Combine flour, salt and pepper in a paper or plastic bag. Lightly dredge meat with mixture.

Heat olive oil in a Dutch oven or large saucepan over medium-high heat. Working in batches, cook about half of the meat (do not crowd the pan or meat will not brown) about 2 mintues per side or until browned. Transfer cooked meat to a plate and repeat until all meat is cooked.

Add onions and garlic to the pan, season lightly with salt and pepper, and saute over medium-low heat until just onions are just transparent. Return meat and any accummulated juices to the pan and stir in herbs de Provence and rosemary. Stir in tomato paste. Add the wine and beef broth, mixing well to incorporate. Bring to a simmer over low heat.

Place a large square of foil down loosely on top of the mixture and cover the pot tightly. Place covered pot into the preheated oven and allow to cook about about 1 hour. Check the mixture, making sure it hasn't become too dry---if it has, add more beef broth or water. Put pot back into the oven and cook for about 1 hour longer or until meat is tender.

Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. I like to serve this hot with sides of sauteed mushrooms and mashed potatoes or ladled over hot cooked noodles or rice.

Copyright 2008 Carol Stevens, Shaboom's Kitchen, All Rights Reserved