Brasato al Barolo, Braised Beef in Barolo Wine

 

One of the most typical recipes of Piedmontese cuisine, the Brasato al Barolo, or braised beef in Barolo wine sauce, is one of the most tasty and delicious entrees that brings together all the true essence of one of the richest regional cuisines of the Belpaese, with its local ingredients and fine preparation. A slow-cooked stew that is well marinated in Barolo wine, one of the most beloved wines in Italy due to its refined and intense taste that encompasses an extremely complex and aromatic equilibrium. As for the meat cut, the most suitable is the so-called "roast of the vein" or "hat of priest", derived from the forequarter. Sometimes it is left to marinate for at least half a day in the wine, before switching cooking it, in order to further soften the meat (procedure often used to prepare game). As a side dish, we recommend to accompany the braised meat with potatoes, polenta or braised onions.

Ingredients (6/8 servings)

1 Pound of meat

1 Bottle of Barolo

Half a glass of cognac

2 onions

2 carrots

Celery stalk

2  garlic cloves

Cloves

1 Stick of cinnamon

Juniper berries

Peppercorn

A handful of aromatic herbs: bay leaf, sage, rosemary, thyme

Extra virgin olive oil

Butter

Cooking salt

Fine salt

Preparation

Put the meat in a pan. Cut onions being careful not to cut them too finely. Then do the same for the carrots and celery, and sprinkle over the meat. Combine the herbs, cloves, cinnamon, juniper berries, peppercorn, a pinch of coarse salt and wash it all down with Barolo. The meat should marinate in wine for at least half a day (but 24 hours is also okay), store the container in a refrigerator or in a cool place. After the time necessary for the marinade has passed, drain the vegetables, slice them finely and fry them in a pan with oil and butter. Drain the meat and dry it, then fry it over high heat with the chopped vegetable mix. Flambé it with the warmed cognac and eventually add the sauce marinade. Cover the pot and cook on low heat for two hours. Remove the vegetables, blend them and put the sauce in the pan and continue cooking for another half hour on low heat.