Wednesday, January 17, 2007

I have a crazed day today, so in lieu of an actual post: here are the recipes for the Provencal Beef Stew and Plum Crisp I made a few weeks ago. What makes me psyched is that over the weekend there was a Barefoot Contessa episode on where Ina made pretty much this same menu for a dinner party she was having. Great minds think alike, oui? I love this stew because it only takes about 15 minutes of prep time and then you can just walk away from it for a few hours, while it makes your home smell divine. Both the stew and the crisp heat up well for leftovers as well. It's the perfect meal for a cold winter night.

Daube (Provencal Beef Stew)
4 tbsp. olive oil
2 med. onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, crushed
2 lbs. stew beef, cut in 1.5-2" pieces
1 14.5 oz-19oz can plum tomatoes
3 carrots, chopped in half & quartered
2 tsp thyme
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. salt
2 bay leaves
1 tsp cloves
4 pieces (1/2x4") orange rind
2 c. red wine

Brown beef in batches with 2 tablespoon olive oil in large stock pot over medium heat. Remove with slotted spoon and set aside. Add remaining 2 tablespoon olive oil, onion and saute 5 minutes or so until translucent. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Turn heat on high and add remaining ingredients and beef. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce to low, simmering for 2-2.5 hours. After that time, remove the beef and keep warm. Heat stew on high and boil for 10 minutes to reduce. Serve stew spooned over beef. Serve with boiled potatoes and good French bread. Delicious!

Crumble de Quetsches (Plum Crisp with Cassis and Ground Almonds)
1-3/4 lbs. plums
4 Tablespoons crème de cassis (I used melted red-currant jam)
2 Tablespoons confectioners' sugar
7 Tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sugar (I used Splenda)
1/2 cup ground almonds
3/4 cup all purpose flour

Preheat oven to 400F. Wash the plums. Cut them in half, remove the pit and cut in half again. Cut the quarters into 3rds or 4ths depending on how big the plums are and how big you want your slices. Leave the skin on.

Place the cut plums in a large bowl toss with the confectioners' sugar and the cassis/jam. Pour the plums into a baking dish. Cut the butter into small cubes. Place the cubes along with the sugar/Splenda, ground almonds and flour into a bowl. Using your fingers, mix the ingredients together, or if you like, throw it all in the food processor and pulse 2 or 3 times. Sprinkle the topping over the plums. Place in the oven and cook for 25 minutes.

Serve warm from the oven.

1 comment:

Nicky said...

You're making me hungry and I don't even eat meat! LOL...