Mulled Wine Beef Ragu with Gnocchi. Slow-cooked, fall apart braised beef stewed in a rich red wine and tomato sauce infused with warming mulling spices, fresh citrus, a bouquet of herbs and served over potato gnocchi with lots of fresh parmesan and parsley. This one pot meal is super comforting, bursting with holiday flavours and feeds many.
This meal is the heart of the holidays. It’s made with fresh ingredients, all comes together in one pot, smells incredible and needs to be added to everyone’s seasonal repertoire. This dish comes to mind when i’m looking forward to sitting around the table with the family smiling and laughing over a delicious meal. It’s elevated, casual, and cozy all in one.
Sunday sauce and Sunday suppers bring smiles all around. There’s just something about food that’s been cooking all day long. This recipe starts off like most, browning the meat and sweating the vegetables. The first step is to cube the meat into large chunks and generously season it with salt and pepper. I like to go heavy on the seasoning because the meat cooks for a long time, by the time its all ready it won’t be lacking in any salt. Its always best to go over then under in these types of recipes. Next is to toss the beef in some flour. This will help brown the meat better when you put it in the hot oil. It will deepen the colour, flavour and get it caramelizing quicker which helps the meat bring out its natural flavours.
To me mulled wine screams Christmas time and the holidays. Especially if you live somewhere that’s cold and snows a lot. It feels extra magical and special to sip on hot wine full of aromatics when its cold outside. Since red wine is very common for braising beef I though it would be fun to take it one step further and add ingredients for mulled wine. I like to cut my orange in half and stud it with the cloves so that they aren’t lost in the liquid while it cooks. You won’t want to bite into one of those. Next is some cinnamon sticks, star anise and fresh herbs. I like to add all these things just before putting the pot in the oven so that they all sit on the top. It doesn’t need to be stirred in, lots of the flavours will seep into the sauce as it cooks down.
I like to serve this with potato gnocchi in place of cooked potatoes. It switches things up from the old school traditional way and makes it a little more fun. You get the best of both, pasta and potatoes which is perfect for a braised beef. Everything comes together nicely. The sauce hold up and each bite is as good as the first one.
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