Ingredients (serves 4)
1kg chuck / gravy steak, cut into 3cm cubes
2 medium sized carrots
3 stalks of celery
3 cloves of garlic
1 large brown onion
800g tin of diced tomatoes (the big tin, or two normal sized ones)
1/2 cup red wine
1 cup chicken stock
Salt & Pepper to taste
1. Chop the garlic, carrots, celery, onion and bacon into tiny little pieces - or, if you have a food processor, whizz it all together.
2. Over medium heat on the stove top, heat one tablespoon of olive oil and add one quarter of your beef. Brown for 2-3 minutes and transfer to plate. Continue until all the beef is done. (Note: You split it up into thirds so the beef fries and browns rather than stews... which it will do if there is too much in the pot!)
2. Add another tablespoon of oil, and then fry the garlic, onion, carrots, celery and bacon until soft, stirring constantly - about 5 minutes.
3. Put the beef back into the pot, and then add the liquids - the tinned tomatoes, red wine and chicken stock.
4. Leave the pot uncovered, and let it come to a boil. When it does, turn the heat right down, cover and let it simmer for 2 hours, stirring every once in awhile (I only checked every half an hour).
5. After 2 hours, uncover and check the meat - by this stage, the beef should be so tender that it will shred when pressed with a wooden spoon. If it is at this stage, turn the heat off and bash the beef in the pot until it all falls into pieces. If it isn't yet there, cover and cook for another 20 minutes and check again.
6. When all the meat is shredded, return to the heat uncovered to let it all cook through for another 10 minutes - this will help the sauce reduce and thicken. Taste, and add salt / pepper as required.
7. Serve with pasta (freshly made if you can be bothered - it's worth the effort!), sprinkle with freshly grated parmesan and let this make your day!
|After over 2 hours of cooking... yum!|
|Freshly made pasta|
2 1/2 cups plain flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
4 eggs at room temperature
Extra flour for dusting
1. On a clean counter (which I liberally cover with gladwrap first, so cleaning up is easy!), make a mound of your flour and salt, and create a crater in the middle.
2. Crack two eggs into the well, and using a fork, whisk the eggs, adding a little more flour as you go.
3. Crack in the last two eggs and whisk with the fork a little bit more before using your hands to bring it all together into a dough.
4. Knead the dough for a few minutes, or until it springs back a little when you press a thumb into it. Dust with fresh flour and then cover with a clean tea towel for a few minutes as you set up your pasta maker.
5. Tear off about a quarter of the dough, knead a little more to make sure that it's not too sticky (some additional flour is called for if it sticks to your hands), and then flatten with your palm until about 1cm thick before putting it through the pasta maker at the widest setting.
6. Once it's gone through the pasta maker, dust it with flour on both sides, fold it in half and put it through again. I like to repeat this process twice, dusting with flour each time, before putting the pasta maker down to a thinner setting.
7. Roll it through the pasta maker, dusting each time, and reducing the setting right to the thinnest at the end. Then put on the spaghetti / fettuccine maker and roll it through to make your pasta. Toss the freshly cut pasta with more flour and either hang them up on a clothes hanger or wrap it around your hand into a little nest and let it sit until ready to cook.
8. Boil water that is well salted, and put the pasta in. Because it's freshly made, it will only take a few minutes to cook - once it floats, turn the heat off and drain and enjoy!
Save this recipe for a rainy cold day and thank me later!