More often than I like to admit, I come across a recipe that I obsess about trying. It’s like a song stuck in my head, I keep thinking about it and it has be made. My latest fixation is Joues de Boeuf aux Agrumes (Beef Cheeks Braised in Red Wine with Orange Zest) from the September 2008 issue of Gourmet Magazine.
An obsession is a preoccupation with an often unreasonable object or idea. What could be unreasonable about making a beef stew? Well for one, it was 90-degrees outside today and a stew seems a bit too hearty. Also, it’s a weeknight; the beef has to braise for 3-hours. We’ll be eating at 10pm! Oh well, I’m cooking on the right side of my brain, logic and reason don’t usually play center stage.
For this recipe, I am using the chuck roast from Brookville Market (since beef cheeks are a little scarce this side of the
Meat - $9.62
Carrots - $2.99
Wine - $8.99
Joues de Boeuf aux Agrumes
(Beef Cheeks Braised in Red Wine with
- Active time:45 min
- Start to finish:3 1/4 hr
The flavor of the wine looms large in this meaty braise, lending an extraordinary savoriness to the melt-in-your-mouth carrots. For more recipes inspired by the City of
2 lb beef cheeks or boneless beef chuck roast
2 tablespoons grapeseed or vegetable oil
1 lb onions, coarsely chopped
1 lb baby carrots, peeled
1 (750-ml) bottle dry red wine
6 to 8 (3- by 1-inch) strips of orange zest
- Preheat oven to 350° with rack in middle.
- If using chuck, cut across grain into 4 pieces.
- Pat beef dry and season with 1 tsp salt and 1/2 tsp pepper. Heat oil in a 4- to 6-qt heavy pot over medium-high heat until it shimmers. Brown beef on all sides, 6 to 10 minutes total. Transfer to a plate with tongs.
- Add onions, carrots, 3/4 tsp salt, and 1/2 tsp pepper to pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, 8 to 10 minutes. Add wine and zest and bring to a boil. Add beef and return to a boil. Cover pot and braise in oven until meat is very tender, 2 to 4 hours (beef cheeks take longer than chuck). Season with salt and pepper. Serve beef with carrots and sauce.
Post script: YUM! The meat and veggies were wonderful, velvety done! The stew’s broth was very thin. I scooped out the meat and most of the veggies and then used an immersion blender to puree the rest into a thicker sauce. Next time I will dredge the beef in flour to thicken the sauce as it cooks.