Serving
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Beef in Magdalener Sauce
Germany / Südtirol (Italy)
   
Serves
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
4 main  
***
3 hrs  
Yes
This beef dish with intensely flavorful sauce can be made two ways. The photo shows it made with chunks of beef for buffet service, but for more formal service it can done as a single cut of beef, sliced after cooking and served with a scoop of sauce and mashed potatoes on the side. The pattern recipe is from Südtirol, but I expect it's made similarly in Germany.



2-1/4
1/2
1/3
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7
3
3
5
1/3
2
3/8
1/4
1-1/4
3
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2
1
2
1
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1
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#
t
t
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oz
oz
oz
oz
c
cl
oz
c
c
c
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T
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Beef (1)
Salt
Pepper
---------
Onion
Carrot
Celery
Tomato
Tomato purée
Garlic
Porcini, dry (2)
Oil
Wine, red (3)
Beef Broth
-- Herbs
Thyme sprig
Rosemary sprig  
Sage Leaf
Bay Leaf
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Arrowroot (4)
Water
Prep   -   (20 min)
  1. If going buffet, cut BEEF into cubes about 1-1/2 inches on a side - not too small, because you'll be fishing the beef out, twice.
  2. Massage Beef with Salt and Pepper. Set aside.
  3. Chop ONION, CARROTS and CELERY quite small. Mix.
  4. Scald TOMATO in boiling water 1 minute, quench in cold water, peel and chop small. Mix with Tomato Purée.
  5. Lightly crush GARLIC.
  6. Crush PORCINI.
Run   -   (2 to 2-1/2 hrs)
  1. In a spacious coverable sauté pan or heavy dutch oven (see Note-5) heat Oil and fry Beef over moderate heat until all exuded liquid has evaporated and the meat is lightly browned on all sides.
  2. Remove Beef, leaving as much oil as possible behind. Stir in Onion mix and fry over moderate heat until onions threaten to show some color.
  3. Pour into a strainer to remove excess oil, if needed. Return vegetables to the pan along with Tomato mix. Fry stirring over moderate heat until the tomatoes start to soften.
  4. Stir in Wine, scraping the fond from the pan to deglaze, then add back Beef and simmer down until there is almost no liquid..
  5. Stir in Broth, Garlic, Porcini and Herbs. Cover tightly and simmer slowly, turning Beef now and then, until Beef is tender. This can be 1-1/2 to 2-1/2 hours depending on cut and whether chunks or whole cut. Whole cut should come to 145°F/63°C (rare) to 160°F/70°C (medium rare) in the center.
  6. Remove Beef from pan. Keep warm.
  7. Press sauce through a strainer, discarding solids. Defat Sauce (use your gravy separator). Simmer down to a light sauce consistency. Check Seasoning.
  8. If Beef is in chunks, stir back in until reheated and coated with sauce (see Note-6).
  9. Mix Arrowroot with 1 T Water and stir in to thicken the sauce if desired (see Note-4).
  10. Serve hot with Potatoes or similar.
NOTES:
  1. Beef:   Weight is without bones and all excess fat removed. Chuck is good for this recipe, round is ok but takes a bit longer cooking.
  2. Porcini:   These are Dried Mushrooms, available at Italian markets and often regular supermarkets (at a high price), but there is no real substitute. They are more economically bought on-line. They store well, so you can buy an economical quantity.
  3. Red Wine:   St. Magdalener is the specified wine, but can be hard to find and expensive here in Southern California. It is a light bodied, fruity red wine made from trollinger grapes in Germany and Südtirol, Italy. The pattern recipe suggests Barolo as a substitute, but the Barolo at Trader Joe's was priced rather high for cooking. I used a Trentatre Rosso and it worked fine.
  4. Arrowroot: This hasn't quite the thickening power of cornstarch, but is more heat stable and neutral in taste. If making the dish in advance, stir in the Arrowroot upon reheating to a simmer.
  5. Sauté Pan / Dutch Oven:   The pattern recipe fries and braises the meat as a whole chunk, so a large, non-reactive Dutch oven is needed. I fry as cubes, so a suitable sauté pan is better, and the meat doesn't need constant basting.
  6. Method:   The method used by the pattern recipe is more suited to restaurant service or formal occasions. The beef is browned as a single piece (brisket or silverside (UK for bottom round or rump roast)). It is sliced after cooking, then served with a scoop of sauce over and mashed potatoes on the side. The recipe proceeds as above, but is braised in a 325°F/165°C oven, basting the meat now and then. With so much liquid I see no reason the meat can't be finished on the stovetop (here in sunny Southern California we don't heat up an oven unless we really need to).
  7. Serving:   For buffet service, I do this recipe entirely on the stovetop, but serve it in a slow cooker set to "keep warm". I'm too much a control freak to cook anything in a slow cooker (a very few exceptions), and they just take way too long to warm anything up for serving, but once the dish is done and hot, the slow cooker works fine.
  8. U.S. measure: t=teaspoon, T=Tablespoon, c=cup, qt=quart, oz=ounce, #=pound, cl=clove in=inch, ar=as required tt=to taste
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