Preparation time: 30 mins / Cooking time: at least 3 hours
This recipe will feed 8
- 1.5 to 2kgs Shin,Stewing or chuck steak
- 2 large onions diced
- At least 1/2 bottle of rich red wine
- 4 Tbsp (30ml) red wine vinegar
- 3 Cloves of garlic, thinly sliced or crushed( I use plenty)
- 1kg baby onions Pickling type …cut a cross in each onion base
- Olive oil for frying
- 2 cinnamon stick
- 3 Bay leaves
- 10 whole cloves
- 1 tsp ground cumin and 1 of brown(or white) sugar
- 2 tblsp tomato paste
- 200ml fantastic beef stock (heathens can make with oxo / stock cube if no real stock)
- Sea Salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
- 4 tblsp of currants or raisin type thingos
- 200gm Fetta cheese diced
Preheat the oven to 140 deg C
Cut your beef into large chunks, the bigger the better, but around 2″ . Season the flour with plenty of black pepper and a bit of salt, and coat the chunks of beef. In a fairly hot pan, heat the olive oil and when hot, fry chunks of beef until sealed on all sides and slightly browned.
These can be done in batches of a few at a time. Put into a large casserole or a pot with a secure lid and sprinkle the cumin and sugar over the meat.
Oil the pan and sauté the diced onions & garlic over a medium heat until they start to brown – about 5 minutes. Put this into the casserole with the beef. Pour the wine into the pan, add the red wine vinegar, tomato paste ,cinnamon, cloves and heat until it just begins to boil. Add this to the casserole along with the beef stock and the bay leaves.
Wrestle casserole and whack it into the oven at 140 C. Grab yourself the other half bottle of wine and marinate your throat . Occasionally (twice)disturb yourself to give the stifado a stir watching to see enough moisture.
After 1 hour put in the pickling onions and currants…..It will take at least 3 hours to cook, but 4 will be better and 5 won’t hurt it!
Pull it out and stir in the fetta and rest it for 5mins or so while the cheese settles in. When it’s done, the meat should be very tender and the sauce and psyche will be nice and thick.
Traditionally, this dish is served with crusty bread to slop up the gravy, but it’s also great with a few veg and brown and black rice.