- 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 1 kg (2 pounds) gravy beef, cut into 2cm (¾-inch) pieces
- 2 rindless bacon slices (130g), chopped coarsely
- 1 medium leek (350g), sliced thinly
- 2 medium carrots (240g), diced
- 1 stalk celery (150g), trimmed, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 400 grams (12½ ounces) canned crushed tomatoes
- 1½ cups (375ml) beef stock
- 1 cup (250ml) dry red wine
- 2 bay leaves
- 4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 6 sprigs fresh flat-leaf parsley
- 2 medium zucchini (240g), sliced
- ½ cup (75g) pitted black olives
- 1Heat oil in large heavy-based saucepan over high heat. Cook beef, in batches, for 5 minutes or until browned all over. Remove from pan.
- 2Cook bacon, leek, carrot, celery and garlic in same pan, stirring, for 5 minutes or until leek softens.
- 3Return beef to pan, add tomatoes, stock, wine, bay leaves, thyme and parsley; bring to the boil. Reduce heat to low; cook stew, covered, for 1 hour, stirring occasionally.
- 4Add zucchini and olives; cook, covered, for 30 minutes or until beef is tender.
- 5Remove and discard thyme and parsley before serving.
- 6Serve with mashed potato, if you like.
If you wouldn't drink it, don't cook with it: that's the rule of thumb for choosing wine for cooking.
Cheap, inferior quality wines will impart a less pleasant flavour than a great drinking wine.
Serve a hearty casserole such as this with mashed potato or crusty bread to mop up the sauce.
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