Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Top Round Steak Stew with Parmesan Cheese Dumplings

This dish is a perfect example of that classic rustic meal that is most ideally consumed in a snow covered log cabin nestled among the mountains in front of a roaring fire. For those of us stuck in the city, we can always close our eyes and make do with a candle lit porch (still magical on a less grand scale).

Being on a budget, I have come very familiar with the tougher (aka cheaper) cuts of meat that people often shy away from. Yes, they can be chewy and unforgiving, sitting in your oven for hours on end while still resisting even your strongest cutting utensil but FEAR NOT my friends, anything can be delicious if you cook it long enough. You just need a whole lot of patience, some special spices, and some alcohol doesn't hurt either.

I've made many a roast in my day, but the sauce in this dish was the game changer for me, the tomato mixed with the wine and natural drippings from the beef combined to create a sinfully savory sauce that is almost gravy-like in texture. The Parmesan dumplings are the metaphorical cherry on top with their moist texture and the slight salty tang from the cheese.

Top Round Steak Stew with Parmesan Cheese Dumplings

serves 3-4

recipe adapted from Simply Delicious

NOTE:Please allow 2-3 hours of cooking time

For the stew...
package of 4-5 top round steaks cut into chunks (or another tough cut of meat like chuck or round)
1 onion, finely chopped
1 celery stick, finely chopped
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
400g (about 14-15oz) tin chopped tomatoes
1 TBS tomato paste
2 tsp sugar
2 TBS soy sauce
1 cup red wine (I used Lambrusco)
2 tins (use the tomato tin) beef stock
1 bay leaf
5 sprigs fresh thyme
1 cup (roughly) white button mushrooms, sliced thin
salt & pepper to taste

For the Parmesan dumplings...
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup Parmesan, grated
100ml milk
1/2 tsp salt

1.To make the stew, season the beef with salt and pepper and sear in a heavy-based pot in a splash of oil until browned on all sides.
Remove from the pot and set aside.
2.In the same pot, fry the onion, celery and carrots until soft and fragrant. Add garlic and fry for another 30 seconds.
3.Pour in the chopped tomatoes, tomato paste, sugar, wine and soy sauce and allow to come up to a simmer. Add the beef back into the pot and pour in the beef stock, add the bay leaf and thyme.
4.Turn the heat down and cover with a lid. Allow to simmer for 2 hours until the beef is soft. Add the mushrooms and allow to cook for 10 minutes uncovered then adjust the seasoning to taste.
5.To make the dumplings, place the butter, flour, baking powder, salt and Parmesan in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse until the mixture resembles rough breadcrumbs. With the motor running, pour in the milk slowly until the mixture comes together in a ball.
Remove and form dumplings, just slightly smaller than golf balls.
6.Place the dumplings on top of the stew and cover with the lid. Allow to steam for 10 minutes. (Make sure the stew is simmering gently otherwise the dumplings will fall apart.) When the dumplings are cooked through, remove the lid and serve immediately.

1 comment :

  1. Yes, please! To the stew, dumplings, and snow!!


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