A place where my thoughts congregate

Multi-Pepper and Beef Stew

So i have had a yen for roasted pork belly and crackling for about a month now. I have been researching ways to make the crackling extra cracky (I  was going to scald it with boiling oil) and dreaming about the apples and onions that I will roast with it.

Obviously, when I sent Dan to the store to buy said pork, my luck struck again. No pork in sight. Anywhere. This always happens to me  -If I want duck, no duck. If I need coriander seeds, they bare nowhere to be bought. We have just decided that we’ll no longer plan our meals, simply to avoid the disappointment.

We ended up getting beef shortrib – a fantastic cut of beef if there ever was one (although I am still craving pork crackling) and I had to make do with that to magic up a meal. I remembered a fantastic Trinchado I had at Spetada Restaurant in Rosebank the other day and being a big fan of the paprika/beef flavour combo the Multi-Pepper and Beef stew was born.

The result was nothing short of spectacular, even if I have to say so myself.

I introduce to you:

Multi-Pepper and Beef Stew

You will need:

1kg of beef shortrib (2,5cm cubes)

1 onion – chopped

2-3 garlic cloves

125g mushrooms – whole

10 pepperdews (not the PeppaDews (TM) canned/preserved – fresh ones) – whole

2 fresh paprika peppers – chopped

2 tbs tomato paste

2 bell peppers (I used a yellow and a red one) – chopped

2 tsp hot smoked paprika

2 tsp black pepper

2 tsp red pepper flakes

1 tbs chamoulah spice

1 tbs korean chili spice

1 herb bouquet – 10 thyme sprigs, 1 rosemary sprig, 2 bay leaves – tied together for easy removal

1/4 cup olives



canola/rape seed oil


How to:

Cover the bottom of a cast-iron casserole dish in a thin layer of oil and heat it up until the oil starts splattering. Start browning the beef in batches, rendering the fat and creating a dark brown crust on the meat cubes.

Remove the meat from the pot and add in the fresh peppers, onions and mushrooms to the hot oil/beef drippings. Fry until the onions start softening.

Add the tomato paste and cook until the paste starts to darken and the acidity dissipates. Add the meat back in, making sure that all the juices that collected is added back in as well.

Add all the dry spices and stir well.

Cover the meat with water, add the herb bouquet and simmer for at least two hours. Top up the water if it gets too low and simmer away. Two hours is the minimum, but you can simmer this until the cows come home. The longer it simmers, the nicer it is.

Once you are ready to serve, remove all the meat and veg from the pot and add the olives. Reduce the liquid until thick. Add the stew back in, heat through and serve with crusty bread.





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