Slow Braised Beef Cheek Ragu is a firm favourite here and a big hug in a bowl. Beef Cheeks are good value for money and perfect to cook low and slow untill meltingly tender. It is hearty, warming, filling and relatively good for you. This also has hidden vegetables so Finn eats this without acting like I’m trying to murder him by broccoli.
I make this in my beloved and ancient Denby casserole dish in the oven but you can equally reduce the liquid measurements and make it in a slow cooker. If you are investing in a slow cooker, I highly recommend the Pressure King Pro 24 in 1.
Slow Braised Beef Cheek Ragu Ingredients
2 tablespoons oil + 1 tablespoon butter
1 pack of smoked pancetta cubed
2 stalks celery
4 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons tomato puree
3 tablespoons plain flour
400mls red wine
400mls beef stock
1 Tin Chopped Tomatoes
Salt + Pepper
Sprigs of fresh thyme and rosemary
2 fresh bay leaves
1- Heat the oil and butter in your casserole dish on the stove top over a low to medium heat. Add the pancetta and cook untill it begins to brown. Remove and set aside.
2- Brown the beef cheeks on both sides, one at a time and set aside.
3- I loathe chopping so I blitz the celery, onion and garlic into a paste in the food processor. Add to your pan and cook for 5 minutes, stirring every so often. Add the pancetta back to the pot, the tomato puree and the chopped carrots. Cook for a further 2 minutes.
4- Sprinkle over the flour, cook for 2-3 minutes stirring constantly. Add the red wine and stir untill combined. Then add the chopped tomatoes and beef stock. Return the beef cheeks to the pot along with the fresh herbs. Cover and cook in a 160 degree oven for 2-3 hours untill beef is soft and tender.
5- We serve ours with Pappardelle pasta, a grating of parmesan and garlic bread. I love having this ready for a bowl of comfort food after work.