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Braised Beef With Baked Macaroni

1 lb Long macaroni
1 tb Butter
2/3 c Freshly grated Parmesan or aged Gruyere Cheese or a mixture of both
5 lb Boneless lean stewing beef; cut into 1 1/2 inch cubes
5 oz Salt pork with the rind removed; blanched in boiling water for 5 minutes, drained and finely diced
3 tb Olive oil
5 Cloves garlic; crushed
2 Sprigs thyme
3 Bay leaves
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
2 Carrots; quartered lengthwise
About 1 quart red wine

In an earthenware or cast iron casserole with a lid, briefly saute the diced pork in the olive oil. Add the beef, garlic cloves, thyme, bay leaves, salt, pepper and the carrots. Pour in the wine, making sure it covers the meat completely. Cover the pot with a piece of buttered wax paper or aluminum foil tied on tightly, then put on the lid. Bring to a boil and simmer for three to four hours. At the end of the cooking time, skim to remove excess fat from the surface.

Cook the macaroni in plenty of boiling salted water until done, about 20 minutes. Rinse in cold water and drain. butter a shallow baking dish and cover with a layer of macaroni. Sprinkle with some of the cheese, then add a layer of macaroni, and so on until the dish is full, ending with cheese. Moisten well with gravy from the beef. Brown in a preheated 425 degree oven for seven or eight minutes. serve the macaroni from the baking dish, the braised beef from the casserole.

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