Serving
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Beef with Tomato & Onions
Greek
  -   Stifatho
Serves
Effort:
Sched:
DoAhead:  
4 main  
***
3 hrs  
Yes
A beef stew from Greece - but note its close resemblance to Italian Beef with Tomato & Peas. Greece is not suitable for raising cattle, and though they were brought by invaders from Bulgaria, beef is still scarce and expensive. Recipes have been adapted from other parts of Europe.



2-1/4
6
2
1-1/4
------
14
1/2
2
2/3
1
3
4
1
1/3
------
3
2
#
oz
cl
#
---
oz
c
T
c

in

t
t
---
T
T
Beef (1)
Onion
Garlic
Onions, tiny (2)
-- Sauce mix
Crushed Tomatoes (3)
Wine, red
Wine Vinegar, red  
Stock
Bay Leaf
Cinnamon stick
Cloves
Salt
Pepper
--------
Olive Oil, pure
Currants
Prep   -   (25 min)
  1. Cut BEEF into cubes about 1-1/4 inches on a side.
  2. Chop ONION fine. Crush GARLIC. Mix.
  3. Bring plenty of water to a boil. Pour in BOILING ONIONS and stir them around for 1 to 1-1/2 minutes depending on size. Drain and chill with cold water. Cut off the tip and peel. Trim the root ends as little as you can so the onions hold together. All this can be done while the Beef is simmering, or a couple of days ahead and refrigerate.
  4. Mix all Sauce items.
Run   -   (2 to 2-1/2 hrs)
  1. In a 3-1/2 quart sauté pan heat Olive Oil and fry Beef over highest heat until all exuded liquid has evaporated and the meat is lightly browned on all sides. Take care the fond stuck to the bottom of the pan doesn't burn.
  2. Remove Beef, leaving as much oil as possible behind.
  3. Stir in Onion mix and fry over moderate heat until onions are translucent.
  4. Stir in Sauce mix and bring to a simmer. Cook over low heat scraping up the fond from the bottom of the pan until it is all incorporated into the sauce.
  5. Stir Beef back in and bring to a boil. Simmer covered over very low heat (see Note-4) for 1 to 1-1/4 hours depending on cut.
  6. Stir in Boiling Onions and Currants. Bring back to a simmer for another 1 to 1-1/2 hours depending on cut. Finish simmering uncovered to thicken sauce as desired (see Note-4).
  7. Serve with Potatoes or Pasta (see Note-5).
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. Boiling Onions:   Pearl onions are a real hassle (and expensive). I select the smallest boiling onions I can find in a bin at a local market, ideally about 1 inch, but sometimes I have to settle for larger ones.
  3. Crushed Tomatoes:   The pattern recipe calls for "tomato purée, but I like some texture so used crushed or diced.
  4. Cooking:   The pattern recipe fries the beef in a skillet, then places it in a casserole. The sauce is used to deglaze the skillet and is then poured over the beef. The recipe is finished in a preheated 325°F/165°C oven. Here in Southern California we don't heat up an oven unless we really need to, and the recipe admits it can be done all on the stovetop. Also, If you don't have a large enough sauté pan you can use the skillet method and finish in a pot (or in the oven). A slow cooker would also work fine, but would need more time.
  5. Serving:   Served as a party buffet dish I would leave the sauce fairly liquid, adding potatoes to the stew. This makes it less likely someone clown will eat all the beef. Peel and cube the potatoes. Cook them in boiling water until just done, then stir into the stew a little before serving. White Rose potatoes work well and red could be used, but avoid Yukon Gold types - they turn to mush if cooked a little long.
  6. 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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