Catalan Beef Stew or “Estofado de Ternera a la Catalana” is a unique stew with a special ingredient – chocolate! This scrumptious dish of Spanish origin will definitely please your taste buds.
250g piece pancetta, coarsely chopped
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2kg beef sirloin, cut into 2inch pieces
1 tablespoon flour
1/3 cup red wine
2 brown onions, halved and finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
3 cups beef stock
1 cup dry red wine
2 tablespoon tomato paste
1 cup kalamata olives
2 x 7cm cinnamon sticks
4 sprigs fresh thyme
3 strips orange peel
30g dark chocolate, finely chopped
Heat the oil in a Dutch oven or heavy pot under medium heat. Dredge the beef in flour and fry the beef for 6-8 minutes in batches until brown. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to drain the excess oil. Next, fry the pancetta for 2-3 minutes until crisp and then add it to the fried beef.
Sauté the garlic and onions in the same pot for 2-4 minutes until the onions are translucent. Add the cinnamon sticks, orange peel and thyme. Cook for 2 minutes. Return the beef into the pot and then pour the red wine. Let it simmer for 3-5 minutes until the liquid evaporates. Discard the cinnamon sticks and the thyme.
Add the beef stock into the pot and half of the chocolate. Cook it over high heat for 1 hour and reduce the heat to low once it boils. You may use a pressure cooker to cut the cooking time in half. Add more stock if needed.
Once the beef is tender, stir in the tomato paste and then add the olives. Let it simmer for another 5-10 minutes until the sauce thickens. Ladle into a large bowl or individual bowls. Garnish with the remaining chocolate before serving. Serve warm with French bread or rice.
Photo Courtesy Of: flavorrelish