Main Dish

Italian Beef Stew

Portalupi Wine

107 North Street
Healdsburg, CA 95448

My Nonna always enjoyed making this when she visited our home on the coast in Northern California, especially when the fog started to roll in. Now, it's even better with Old Vine Zinfandel!

  • 5-ounce chunk pancetta
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 7 teaspoons Portalupi's Luna Basil Olive Oil
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped yellow onions
  • 15 cipollini pearl onions, peeled
  • 1/2 cup chopped carrots
  • 1/2 pound cremini mushrooms, quartered
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 pounds boneless beef chuck roast, trimmed of fat and cut into cubes
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
  • 1 cup Old Vine Zinfandel
  • 3 3/4 cups peeled, seeded and chopped plum tomatoes
  • 1 1/2 cups fat-free, low-sodium beef broth
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 15 baby carrots, peeled, with stem intact
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
In a saucepan over high heat, combine the pancetta and water and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Drain the pancetta and cut into 1/2-inch-thick sections, then cut the slices into 1-inch-wide lardons.

Meanwhile, heat a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Pour 3 teaspoons of the olive oil into the pot. Add the yellow onion, pearl onions, chopped carrots and mushrooms. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 8 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly, for 45 seconds. Transfer to a bowl.

In the same pot over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 4 teaspoons olive oil. Put the flour in a shallow dish. Sprinkle the beef with 1/2 teaspoon of the salt and the pepper and dredge in the flour. Add half of the beef to the pot and brown on all sides. Transfer to a separate bowl. Repeat with the remaining beef.  

Add the wine to the pot used for cooking the beef and bring to a boil, scraping the bottom of the pot constantly. Cook until the wine is reduced to 1/3 cup, about 5 minutes. Return the meat to the pot along with the pancetta and the onion mixture. Add the tomatoes, broth, oregano, thyme and bay leaves and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, for 45 minutes.  

Uncover the pot and stir in the baby carrots. Simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the meat is very tender,about 1 hour. Discard the bay leaves. Stir in the remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, the basil and parsley and serve.