Recipe by Jacque Pepin
2 lb beef from the flatiron part of the shoulder
2 T olive oil
salt and pepper
1 c finely chopped onion
1 T finely chopped garlic
1 T flour
1 bottle of red wine
2 bay leaves
1 sprigs fresh thyme
15 cipollini or pearl onions
15 cremini mushrooms
15 baby carrots
5 oz pancetta
chopped fresh parsley
1. Buy about 1/2 pound of beef flatiron steak per person. Remove the skin or sinew from the top. Cut the meat into ¼ pound pieces.
2. Preheat the oven to 350°. Melt butter and olive oil in a cast-iron pot. Arrange the meat in one layer in the pot, without crowding, and season it with salt and pepper. Cook on top of the stove over high heat for about 8 minutes, browning the meat on all sides. Repeat, in batches, with remaining meat.
3. Add onion and garlic. Cook over moderate heat for an additional 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add flour. Mix in well so that the flour doesn’t form lumps. Stir in red wine. Add bay leaves, fresh thyme, salt and pepper and bring to a boil. Put meat back into pot. Stir well and cover.
4. Place the pot in the oven and continue to cook for about 1 1/2 hours; the meat should be soft and tender and the liquid properly reduced. The recipe can be prepared to this point up to a day ahead.
5. For the garnishes, peel onions, wash mushrooms and peel carrots. Cut the pancetta into 1/2-inch slices and then cut the slices into 1-inch-wide lardons.
6. Combine the onions, mushrooms, carrots and pancetta in a skillet with olive oil, water and sugar, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil and simmer, covered, for about 15 minutes; at this point, there should be practically no water left. Uncover and cook over high heat, sautéing the vegetables until nicely browned on all sides, about 4 minutes.
7. To serve, mix some of the vegetables and lardons into the stew and sprinkle the rest on top as a garnish. Add a little chopped fresh parsley and serve.