TENDER Beef chunks braised with wedged cabbage, carrots, and onions simmered in a rich brown gravy.
WHAT’S GOING ON HERE:
Beef Chuck Roast: Beef chuck roast comes from around the shoulder area so its a tougher cut. Its connective tissue breaks down making it really moist and tender that why its the best cut for really flavorful roast or stews.
Onions: Onions add a ton of flavor to the meat and broth but it also builds the foundation of the gravy. The onions, once submerged in the cooking liquid the starch begins to breakdown and thicken the gravy . there is nothing better than tender melted onions.
Carrots: Carrots work similarly to onions, once they begin to break down the starch in the carrots thickens the gravy but the carrots also offer a nice contrast in color.
Browning: Liquid browning is a combination of starches, seasonings and caramelized sugars. It doesn’t add a ton of flavor but it gives the beef a deep caramelized brown look that is irreplaceable. Find browning next to sauce, stews , gravy or the Caribbean section of your super market.
Herbs: Dried herbs like thyme, rosemary, bay leaves are always great in stew. Once cooked and steeped into the stew they make the gravy taste richer and earthier.
TIPS & TRICKS FOR THE BEST BRAISED BEEF & CABBAGE
getting color into the beef: color is important in stew to get that deep rich brown color i like to first sear my beef chunks in the hot dutch oven. not only does that start as a great place to build flavor onto once the beef is removed but it gives the meat direct contact with the pan.
prepping the cabbage: when cutting the cabbage keep in mind it will be cooking the same amount of time as the beef so you want bigger slices than usual. keeping the cabbage chopped too small will result in it melted into the pot like a onion. for this recipe i even like to keep the stem intact till after its served.
time: chuck roast needs time. the connective tissue needs to break down so that beef can be fall apart tender. try to cut beef into consistent and small chunks. the smaller the beef the shorter the cooking time the larger the chunks the longer it will take its important that the beef is not boiled the entire cooking time, instead slowly simmer it so that the beef naturally starts to break apart and to keep the cabbage from boiling away.
thickening the gravy: a glaze like gravy that is not too thick or too thin to coat the beef and vegetables completes this dish. if you gravy hasn’t thicken or is fatty simply add a scorn starch slurry to the mix. cornstarch is easier to incorporate than flour. simply, add a drop of COLD water to the cornstarch stir it around to form a paste then add it to the hot pot. be sure to stir it around the pan once added to the hot liquid to help it move around the pan.
serving suggestions: this dish is hearty, i served mine up with red beans and rice and an extra serving of greens. serve this dish how you see fit but i suggest with mashed potatoes or simple rice.
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