Monique Van Vooren’s Carbonnades Flamandes
1 (3 pound) chuck or bottom round
beef, cut into 2-inch pieces
4 tablespoons fat rendered from fresh or salt pork
5 large onions, peeled, thinly sliced
4 tablespoons butter
3 tablespoons flour
1 pint beer
1 cup beef stock or canned bouillon, undiluted
1 teaspoon chopped garlic
1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon thyme
1 tablespoon vinegar
1 bay leaf
Salt and pepper, to taste
Chopped parsley (for garnish)
Brown beef on all sides in rendered fat in large skillet. At same time in another pan, slowly fry onions in butter until golden.
Combine onions and beef in a 4-quart casserole. Add flour to pork fat remaining in pan and mix into smooth paste. Pour in beer and beef stock and bring slowly to a boil. When sauce is thick and smooth, stir in garlic, vinegar, sugar, thyme and bay leaf. Pour mixture over onions and beef in casserole; gently mix together. Taste sauce to boil, then transfer to casserole. Cover tightly; bake in preheated 350 degree F oven for 2 hours, or until meat is tender.
Strain sauce (Belgians don’t) and sprinkle stew with parsley. Serve with plain boiled potatoes.