Browsing Tag:

beef

Cooking

Argentinian Matambre with Chorizo Sausage and Spinach

It’s still winter here in Ottawa, but about 9,000 km straight south of us, Martes de Carnival is going on in Argentina. To mark this special event, Melissa Johnson from the delicious and inspiring breadandwords food blog and I have teamed together to create two variations of Matambre: a unique, colourful and very traditional dish of Argentina.

Matambre is made from flank steak that is stuffed with a variety of herbs and vegetables and then rolled up! Matambre is really an amazing and delicious dish. There are so many flavours popping out at the same time – it’s just so so so good! You can serve it at dinner parties, backyard barbecues or as an appetizer. It’s so delicious!

Matambre literally means kill (matar) hunger (hambre). And this dish certainly does that quickly!

As Matambre is so versatile, Melissa and I decided to do two variations of this amazing Argentinian dish. Melissa’s recipe for matambre is reminiscent of the one her Argentinian mother used to make. Her matambre is stuffed with parsley, cheese, garlic and other colourful vegetables. Melissa seared her steak and then baked it in the oven.

For my recipe, I wanted to add some spice, so I added a layer of chorizo sausage. The spinach combined with the carrots and red peppers is divine. And who knew that olives would taste so mighty fine with steak. Well, they do. Amazing, actually! After the steak is rolled up and seared in a hot skillet, it was simmered in a red wine-based broth for 90 minutes until tender. Yum!

 

raw ingredients for argentinian matambre with chorizo and spinach

To make matambre, you have to butterfly your flank steak. To do this, you will need a very sharp knife, so be careful with your fingers! In the center of the piece of steak (running with the grain) cut about half way through the meat. Then make two short slits perpendicular to the main cut. Slice the steak open along the long cut. Just go easy, if you poke through, it’s not a big deal. You want this steak to open up like a book.

Now it’s time to start layering the filling ingredients. As you lay down the filling, leave a few inches at the far long end.

For my matambre, spread the steak with dijon mustard, leaving a one inch border. Next, spread a layer of herbs, jalapeno peppers and garlic. Then sprinkle sauteed chorizo sausage all over and followed by a layer of spinach leaves. Next, make rows of the sliced red peppers, orange carrots, green olives mixed with roasted red peppers, and red onion.

Roll the steak up towards the empty long end. It may look a bit messy, and if a few filling ingredients pop out, don’t worry, you can put them back in after it is all tied up. Keep the seam side down as you start to tie it up. I used four strings across the steak, and because I wanted to simmer it on top of the stove, I also used one long one for the full length. (Here’s a great video to watch,  just scroll down to the bottom, if you want some tips on tying up your meat!)

Sear the steak on all sides in a hot skillet. I simmered my matambre, but you could also bake yours. If you’re interested in baking your matambre, check out Melissa’s instructions to see how she baked hers.

argentinian matambre with chorizo and spinach

After about 90 minutes, when the meat feels tender, it will look sort of like this. It really stays together quite well.

argentinian matambre with chorizo and spinach

Time to slice this matambre up!

 

Again, get a really sharp knife, and slice your matambre. It actually slices really easily. And have a look inside. So gorgeous! Look at all those colours!!!

argentinian matambre with chorizo and spinach

All of the ingredients create a lovely pattern inside. Remember to present it on your prettiest platter. It will be a showstopper! It’s popular to serve it with chimichurri sauce. You will find the recipe below.

Try both of our recipes or mix and match: bake mine or simmer Melissa’s on top of the stove. Or choose your favourite ingredients from both recipes.

Let us know what you made and how it turned out!

thanks so much

Melissa and Suzanne

buen provecho!

Argentinian Matambre with Chorizo and Spinach

Print Recipe
Serves: 4 Cooking Time: 90 minutes

Ingredients

  • 2 - 2 1/2 lb flank steak
  • 1-2 tbsp dijon mustard (depending on the size of your steak)
  • 1 handful each parsley, watercress, and cilantro (chopped)
  • 2 tbsp pickled jalapeno, chopped
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 1 tsp garlic
  • 1 large handful of baby spinach leaves
  • 1 carrot, cut in quarters
  • 1 red pepper, sliced
  • about 10 large green spanish olives, sliced in half
  • 1/2 roasted red pepper
  • 2 chorizo sausages, cooked and chopped up
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • Broth
  • 2 cups red wine
  • 1 1/2 tsp oregano
  • 1/2 tsp thyme
  • 1/2 tsp garlic, crushed
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Chimichurri Sauce
  • 2 tomatoes (scrape the seeds out, and chop fine)
  • 1 red onion (chopped fine)
  • 3 garlic cloves (chopped fine)
  • one handful of parsley (chopped fine)
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 1 tsp oregano

Instructions

1

Butterfly the flank steak. See instructions above, or find a video on youtube (it's really easy, actually)

2

Spread dijon mustard all over steak.

3

Chop the parsley, cilantro and watercress together with the pickled jalapeno, cumin and garlic. Make sure they all get mixed together.

4

Spread the chopped herbs on top of the dijon mustard. Leave 2-3 inches at the far, long edge of the steak empty. This makes it easier to roll up.

5

Spread the chorizo sausage on top.

6

Layer the washed baby spinach leaves on top of the sausage.

7

In rows, running along the grain of the meat; place the olives, carrots, red pepper. You can do thick rows, repeating rows etc. But try not to overstuff, or it will be difficult to roll.

8

Roll the steak, and leave it on the cutting board while you get ready to tie it up.

9

Cut about 4-5 pieces of butcher's twine and tie the twine around the steak. I used one extra long one to tie from end to end because I simmered it on top of the stove and I didn't want anything to fall out.

10

Sear the steak on all sides in a large hot pan, until all sides are nicely browned.

11

Place the steak in a large pot.

12

Add 2 cups of red wine (I used Malbec because it's Argentinian).

13

Add water until the steak is submerged.

14

Add the oregano, thyme, garlic and bay leaves.

15

Simmer for about 90 minutes, until meat is tender.

16

Place on a cutting board and let it sit for about 10 minutes.

17

Slice up and serve with steamed carrots and sweet potato fries. Yum!

18

Chimichurri Sauce: Chop, chop, chop all of the herbs and vegetables until very fine, especially the parsley.

19

Add the rest of the ingredients and stir to combine.

20

Let the marinade sit in the fridge for atleast one hour.

21

Refrigerate after dinner. Will be good in the fridge for a couple of days.

chimichurri recipe lightly adapted from Jamie Magazine

Cooking

Boeuf en Daube Provençale Recipe

beef stew on plate with glass of red wine

The days are getting longer and the sun warmer, but in our part of the world there is still a lot of snow on the ground, so it still feels wintery.

For our family, winter weather means hearty, comforting slow-cooking dinners. A slow-cooking stew is one of my husband’s favourite family dinners during the long cold winter days; the kind of stew that simmers away in the oven for hours filling the house with the fragrant aroma of beef, wine and aromatic herbs.

I made this Boeuf en daube Provençale many years ago for a New Year’s Eve party and everyone just loved it. It was sooo good. It was the first stew I ever made. I’ll never forget how I lingered over every detail, wanting to get it just right: from buying a nice french red wine, choosing really good stewing beef and making sure my pan was ‘hermetically sealed’ as stated in the instructions. My husband had bought this cookbook for me for Christmas that year and I couldn’t wait to make something from it right away. Even though that cookbook is a few years old now, I still love it with the photos of French vineyards, lavender gardens and braids of garlic. It certainly reminds me of my travels through France.

For me, cooking any french dish is a game-changer. The ingredients required and the techniques used are so particular, I feel as if I have to follow the instructions precisely or it just won’t be authentic, even if I have nothing to compare it to. French cooking is so different from what I grew up with.  The stew that my mom made could change on a whim. She could add a lot of potatoes or just a few, depending on how many there were in the fruit cellar. (anyone remember fruit cellars?) Sometimes she would use parsnips (my dad’s favourite) or if she didn’t have any, she would add carrots. But the ingredients for Boeuf en Daube Provençale are very specific and highlight the local produce.

In fact, Boeuf en Daube Provençale, is so unique, it is supposed to be made in a specially designed pot called a daubiere. Who knew??? A daubiere is a bulbous shaped pot that is narrow at the top and sealed tight with a concave lid. Water is poured on top of the lid, which keeps it cool, so the liquid in the pot condenses on the inside and drips back down into the bottom of the daubiere. This allows the meat to cook in a small amount of liquid without drying out. I don’t own a daubiere (but now I want one). When I make this stew, I seal the top of my pot with tin foil and then place the lid on top to make sure no liquid escapes. If you’re intrigued about the daubiere, like I am, I have listed where to purchase one, at the bottom of this post. (no one is paying me to write that…I’m just super curious about these pots now).

This stew is a very special dish. But you don’t have to wait until New Year’s Eve to try it. It would actually be the perfect dish to serve after going out for a late winter snowshoe, or hike in a park, or you could even just play a game of cards and drink cocktails in front of a cozy fire while it’s stewing.

It’s super easy to make as all the ingredients marinate together in the fridge overnight. The next day, all you need to do is just pop it in the oven and let it slow-cook for a few hours.  I love that, don’t you? And the flavours – Oh My! – succulent cubes of beef and earthy slices of carrot simmering in red wine scented with bouquet garni, aromatic spices and a thick curl of orange peel. It is the quintessential wintery beef stew. It’s so delicious, don’t count on leftovers, but if there are any, this stew is super yummy the next day.

So, before the snow melts and the bulbs pop up and we swap hearty casseroles, warming soups and rib-sticking pasta dishes for cool and refreshing veggie salads and seasonal fruits, try to get outside for one more winter activity knowing that when you get back home, Boeuf en Daube Provençale will be waiting for you.

beef stew on plate

More fun info on stews

A list of french stews to read up on

Everything you ever wanted to know about a daubiere

Paula Wolfert: The Queen of Clay Pot Cooking

Where to buy a Traditional Daubiere

Boeuf en Daube Provençale Stew Recipe

Print Recipe
Serves: 6-8 Cooking Time: 3-4 hours

Ingredients

  • 2 kg best stewing beef
  • 20 grams (1 cup) diced bacon
  • 2 big onions
  • 3-4 carrots
  • bouquet garni
  • bay leaf
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 bottle red table wine
  • 100 ml (1/2 cup) red vinegar
  • 3-5 garlic cloves
  • 1 curl of orange peel
  • 450 ml (2 cups of water)

Instructions

1

Cut the stewing beef into even-sized cubes.

2

Marinate the beef with one chopped onion, sliced carrots, bouquet garni, bay leaf, red wine and vinegar.

3

Cover the stew and put it in the fridge overnight.

4

The next day, preheat your oven to about 300 degrees farhenheit.

5

Saute the bacon and onion together.

6

Dry the pieces of beef on a paper towel and add the beef to the onion and bacon mixture to brown the beef.

7

Place a heaven iron casserole dish on the stove top. Use one that you can use on top of the stove, as well as in the oven. And the hopefully has a lid.

8

Place the bacon, onion and beef into a heavy iron casserole dish.

9

Add the marinade and all the other ingredients.

10

Add the crushed garlic and the orange peel.

11

Add some hot water until all the ingredients are just covered and bring to a boil.

12

Seal the casserole dish with tin foil and then place the lid on top. Make sure it is well sealed.

13

Cook in the oven for 4-5 hours.

14

It will be ready when the beef is very very tender.

15

Serve overtop of noodles.

Recipe adapted slightly from A Taste of Provence