Monday, 23 November 2009

(The Boeuf en Daube was a perfect triumph). . .

My new fall toy is a slow cooker that I bought this weekend and the first recipe I had to try was Boeuf en Daube. Now, this isn't exactly Mrs. Ramsay's version (or her cook's, I should say) which took three days to prepare. My recipe only needed the beef to marinate in wine and herbs overnight. I decided to omit the optional pig's trotter. The next day it was just a matter of cutting up the vegetables and popping it all into the crockpot.

Six hours later, I had this:

And she peered into the dish, with its shiny walls and its confusion of savoury brown and yellow meats, and its bay leaves and its wine, and thought, This will celebrate the occasion . . .
'It is a triumph,' said Mr Bankes, laying his knife down for a moment. He had eaten attentively. It was rich; it was tender. It was perfectly cooked. How did she manage these things in the depth of the country? he asked her. She was a wonderful woman.

Shiny walls, check. Savoury brown meats, check. Yellow meats - no (maybe the pig's trotter?), but I did add some potatoes even though the recipe didn't call for them. So there is some yellow. Hmmm, no bay leaf in the recipe but there is parsley. And white wine. It was rich, the vegetables were very tender; the meat, just a tad overcooked, but still delicious. I managed in the heart of the city and I feel quite full and wonderful. I certainly have lots of leftovers and I'd definitely make this again for a dinner party. One tip - have some crusty bread on hand; there are lots of tasty juices to mop up.

The recipe was taken from this book.

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