Snow flurries this morning but we did have two days of low 70s just as a tease. I had about 2 1/2 lbs of generic beef stew cubes and 1 lb of chicken hearts. Yes, I know, a little bizarre but my husband likes stewed chicken hearts and/or gizzards. I taught him that 😀 This is a very nice stew, so if you don’t want the hearts, just cook 3 1/2 lbs of beef.
I adore fresh pearl onions! Once blanched for a minute, the skin is easily removed by slicing off the root portion and squeezing the top of each onion to slide off the skin. So easy and so worth it.
I lightly browned the pearl onions and cremini mushrooms in butter before adding them to the stew during the last 20 minutes of cooking. I could have eating these as is and did eat some 😉
Normally for the wine braise, I would have chosen an inexpensive but drinkable vin de table Beaujolais. Since this does not exist in our neck of the woods, I measured out some Black Box “merlot.” After all, this was not bœuf bourguignon! I mean, consider the chicken hearts 😀 The Black Box was fine.
Hearty Red Wine Braised Beef Stew with Chicken Hearts
1/2 lb fresh pearl onions
8 ounces cremini mushrooms, quartered
Knob of butter
3 1/2 lbs of stew beef cubes or 2 1/2 lbs of stew beef cubes and 1 lb chicken hearts
Salt and pepper
3 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, halved and sliced
4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
3 tbsp flour
3 cups red wine
1/4 cup brandy
1 bouquet garni
4 parsnips, medium slice
1 package frozen petit pois
Blanch the pearl onions in boiling water for 1 minute. Remove and slice off root end, squeeze the onion skin from the top to remove. Set aside. Heat the butter in a skillet, then add the pearl onions and mushrooms, sauteing until lightly browned. Remove and set aside.
Season the beef and hearts with salt and pepper, add half of the meat to the heated olive oil in a large skillet and saute until brown, remove the meat to a stock pot. Add the other half of the meat to the skillet and saute until brown. Remove to the stock pot.
Add the onion and garlic to the skillet and saute until wilted. Sprinkle with the floor and cook the flour and onions until the flour is gravy brown. Stirring, slowly add the wine to the flour mixture and stir until smooth and bubbly. Add the brandy and boil for 1 minute. Pour the liquids into the stock pot with the meat. Add the bouquet garni and the parsnips, bring to a boil, them simmer for 2 hours. Stir in the reserved mushrooms and pearl onions, the petit pois and continue to simmer for 20 minutes.