Friday, December 10, 2010

A Five Star Cheap Dinner

This is the kind of food I love to prepare. It is simply my favorite way to cook. Take a not so great cut of meat but chose the right technique for preparing it and you have a dish that could be served in the best restaurants for a fraction of the price. Wouldn't this look great served in a trifle bowl on a holiday buffet?

December 10th.

This dish started with this 'buy one get one free' bottom round roast. The 4 1/2 pound roast cost $6.00.

I trimmed most of the fat off of it and sliced it into 1 inch thick steaks.

Use whatever vegetables you have on hand. I had a rutabaga left from thanksgiving so I added it. I would have used parsnips and turnips but I was out of them. If anyone is turning their noses up at this point, don't! These vegetables add depth of flavor. The individual flavors are not discernible.

To 3 tablespoons of olive oil, add diced pancetta, cook until crispy and remove from the oil.

Season the steaks with lots of cracked black pepper.

Sprinkle on sea salt.

Dust with garlic powder.

Dip each seasoned steak into flour and coat lightly.

Oops..this is not in order. But when you are frying the pancetta, add a few anchovies. Again, the anchovy flavor will not be discernible but adds tremendous flavor to the overall dish.

You might need to add a bit more oil to the pot.

Brown the steaks on both sides in hot oil.

You want a nice crispy crust.

Remove the steaks and set them aside.

Leave the drippings in the pot.

Add the vegetables to the hot oil.

Cook just until they start to soften a bit. This will only take a minute or two.

Add two cups of red wine.

Add back the fried pancetta.

Add two 15oz. cans of crushed tomatoes.

Add 2 cups of water.

Add 4 bay leaves.

Add 3 tablespoons of beef demi glace' or beef flavoring. If it is salted be careful of adding additional salt.

Add the beef back to the pot along with any juices.

Submerse it in the liquids.

Add a couple spoons of maggi or kitchen bouquet.

Add a couple beef marrow bones.

Submerse them too. Cover the pot and place it in a 300 degree oven. Cook it for 3-4 hours.

It is ready when the meat can easily be shredded using two forks.

Remove all of the marrow from the bones and stir into the liquid until it is totally blended in. This adds a silky sheen and wonderful flavor.

Add the shredded beef back to the juice and set aside. Boil small rigatonis. The ridges on the side help to carry the sauce with each bite.

Cook the pasta just to al dente.

Mix the pasta with the meat mixture.

The flavors in this dish are just mind boggling. And all for about $10.00.

***The giveaway ends tomorrow morning so there is still time to enter by clicking on the button on the sidebar.