The start of something beautiful

When you have a relationship with some one for many years, living in the same house, sharing meals, you learn their preferences, their quirks. You discover what makes them turn up their nose and what makes their ears perk. After 7 years with Jack I can happily say that I KNOW the man and I KNOW what he loves.

My misfortune is that my husband is a man that eats because it is something that is needed to survive. He does enjoy things that taste good and has preferences but he does not go googly eyed at a well presented dish or get a far away stare when something so good touches his tongue, random “mmm” sounds do not escape his lips when he tastes something amazing. He will even eat things he isn’t crazy about in the right company.

simmer away

He does, however, have his favourites. Something he will order every time we go to a certain restaurant or something he loves for me to make for him if I have a chance. One such thing is Trinchado. A Portuguese beef stew, rich with flavour. My favourite thing about this recipe is how forgiving it is of adjustments, especially the kind of adjustments that make it a healthier option.

The long cooking time means you can use lean cuts of meat and using evaporated milk or regular milk (carefully), while not making the dish AS creamy as using actual cream, still make for a very tasty dish. I personally don’t miss the olives in the dish when I need to take them out for TheSister and my favourite adjustment has to be the wine.

A little longer


What you need:
1 tbs butter
1 tbs olive oil
(or 2 tbs olive oil if you want to reduce the fat)
1kg beef, cubed (as this is a stew you can decide how lean you want the beef)
2 large red onions, chopped
2-3 red chillies, chopped
4 garlic cloves, crushed
250ml beef stock (I used NoMu fonds, the richness is unbeatable)
1 bottle red wine, minus 1 glass for the cook (I used Pinotage)
1 bay leaf
100g black olives, stones removed (optional)
1 sprig fresh rosemary
125ml cream (or evaporated milk or regular milk)
1 tsp lemon rind
Salt and Pepper to taste

What to do:

Heat the butter and oil in a heavy-based pan and brown the beef.
Remove from the pan and set aside.
Lower the heat and saute the onions, I like to put in some water so that the onions get soft without burning, when the water has evaporated add the chillies and cook for about a minute.
Add the stock and wine. Bring to boil and stir continually.
Add the bay leaf, olives (if using) and the fresh rosemary.
Add the crushed garlic
Return the meat to the pan and simmer slowly for 2 hours (or more).
If you are making this in advance, this is where you stop. The rest of the process happens just before serving. When you are ready to serve, gently heat up the trinchado to a medium heat.
Add the cream (or substitute) and stir through. If you are using milk instead pour slowly and carefully to avoid it splittin.
Add the fresh lemon peel and if you want extra rosemary.
Season to taste

You can serve trinchado as a starter with some bread, or a main course with rice.


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