Belgian Braised Beef

This deep, rich beef dish, is prepared with two cuts of beef, vegetables, mushrooms, and nut brown ale. To stick it closer to the Belgian tradition, perhaps a Duvel should be the choice, but we’re preparing it to our Great Lakes Cuisine standards, so a Great Lakes regional brew is the choice. We chose Ale Asylum’s Madtown Nutbrown Ale for the caramel malt flavors. As it is only currently available in Illinois and Wisconsin, you should drive to one of those state right now to get some.  If that is not an option, consider a malty, amber beer, while avoiding a strong hop character because as the beer cooks down, an over-powering hop flavor may present as bitter in the final dish. It may not as well as each beer reacts a bit differently to the fats and cooking times, but we’re cooking a fair amount of beef here so be selective.

Belgian Braised Beef1

Belgian Braised Beef
½ cup canola oil
3 lb. chuck roast
4 beef short ribs
4 cups beef broth
24 oz. amber ale
4 sprigs thyme
4 sprigs savory or rosemary
2 onions
16 oz. Cremini mushrooms
2 lb. carrots
2 lb. yellow flesh potatoes (such as Yukon gold)

2 Tbs. corn starch

Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. Salt, pepper and lightly flour the chuck roast. In a roasting pan, large enough accommodate all ingredients, heat 1/2 cup canola oil over high heat until shimmering but not smoking. Sear the short ribs and the chuck roast until richly browned on both sides. Add beef broth, beer, herbs, one finely diced onion, 8 oz. of finely diced Cremini mushrooms, and 2 finely diced, peeled carrots. Place in oven for two hours topped with parchment paper. Peel and cut onion into large dice. Halve the Cremini mushrooms. Peel and cut carrot into large pieces (apprx. 2 in.), Peel and quarter potatoes.  Remove parchment, remove herb sprigs, add all vegetables to pan. Roast another hour or until potatoes are tender.

Remove the roast and vegetables to a large platter and cover to keep warm. Meanwhile, drain the pan dripping, retaining one cup of liquid. If there is not one cup of liquid, supplement with beef broth.  Mix corn starch with 2 Tbs. cold water. Return pan to the stove top over medium heat, add 1 cup of liquid and cornstarch. Bring to a boil while scraping all the pieces of browned matter from the pan. Remove from heat immediately upon thickening to a gravy. Pour generously over roast and vegetables.

Serve with another cold Madtown Nutbrown Ale.

 

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