Beautiful Meal that will give you more than one Dinner

This recipe was featured last week by cookery writer Lois Daish in that odd publication that is the New Zealand Listener. According to Lois, this Italian delight was taken from the memoirs of one Mary Contini , a delicatessen shop owner in Edinburgh who learned it from her grandmother. She recommends a cross-cut beef blade steak, but it's really up to your fridge or your freezer to decide what to put in your pot.

I have adapted the recipe slightly to my particular tastes, but it is obvious that this leaves a lot for your own input. Some people apparently add a dried Italian sausage to the pot to enhance its flavour. The best girlfriend and myself had this on a warm Sunday night, sitting out in the garden and overlooking the Pacific, accompanied by a 2003 Shingle Peak Pinot Noir. Heaven!

For 2 hungry noders (and for a nice luncheon for the next day) you will need:

Dry the meat and pierce it in several places with a sharp knife. Push a sliver of garlic and some parsley into the cuts (I made about ten deep cuts agains the grain). Sprinkle with salt and black pepper. Chop Onions finely. Heat up Olive Oil in a large, heavy pot at top heat until it's very hot. Add the meat and brown thoroughly from all sides. Take the meat out of the pot, put aside on a plate and let it settle. Reduce the heat to medium and add the Onions and the chili and let them gently simmer until they are translucent and soft (try not to burn them, please). Put the meat back into the pot and add the wine and let the wine start to cook. Now add the tomatoes and reduce the heat to the lowest setting. Put the lid on the pot but allow a small opening for evaporation. Now let the whole thing simmer for 2 1/2 hours. If the sauce is still too thin after 2 1/2 hours, lift the meat out of the pot and cook tomatoes and wine until thick enough to cover pasta. You might want to use a bit of sour cream to aid this.

Now slice the meat thinly and serve warm on a plate with a pasta of your choice, covered with the beautiful sauce. Tomorrow you'll have enough meat left for a delicious sandwich.


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