BEEF CARBONNADEdonna Engelhart
From Linda’s kitchen. She adds: “serve with buttered egg noodles or mashed potatoes”
- 1/4 lb. bacon
- 2 very large yellow onions (1-1/2 to 2 pounds) peeled and thinly sliced
- 1 T sugar
- 1 c. all-purpose flour
- 1 T dried thyme
- 1 t. salt
- 1/2 t. fresh ground black pepper
- 3 lb. beef stew meat (chuck is best), cubed
- vegetable oil (optional)
- 2 c. imported dark beer
- chopped parsley (garnish
Coarsely dice the bacon and saute it in a large skillet until crisp and brown. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and reserve.
Add the onions to the skillet and cook them in the rendered bacon fat until tender, about 20 min. Uncover the skillet, raise the heat, and sprinkle the onions with the sugar. Toss and stir them until they are well browned. Transfer onions to a strainer set over a bowl and let stand while you prepare the beef.
Stir together on a plate the four, thyme, salt and pepper, and roll the cubes of meat around in the mixture until well coated. Shake off the excess and set the cubes on another plate.
Press the onions gently with the back of a spoon to extract as much of the cooking fat as possible. Transfer fat to a kettle. Add additional fat in the form of vegetable oil if it appears you will not have enough for proper browning. Be sparing, however, or the carbonnade will be greasy.
Set the kettle over high heat; when the kettle is very hot, add 6 to 8 beef cubes. Do not crowd them in the kettle or they will not brown properly. Turn the heat down slightly and continue to cook cubes until browned on all sides. Transfer them with a slotted spoon to a clean plate and proceed with the browning until all the meat is done.
Preheat oven to 325F.
Pour the bear into the kettle and use a spoon to stir all the browned bits on the bottom. Return beef cubes to the kettle along with the bacon and onions. Bring to a simmer on the stove. Cover and set on the middle rack of the oven. Cook for 1-1/2 hours, stirring occasionally, or until stew is reduced and thickened and meat is tender. Regulate the oven temperature as needed to maintain a moderate simmer. Taste and correct seasoning. Turn stew out into a heated serving dish, garnish, and serve immediately.
Source: The Silver Palate