Nov 16, 2010

Hachee

Hachee

More Dutch food that you won’t find in many restaurants!

This here is a typical Dutch winter stew. Kinda like the Dutch version of Boeuf Bourguignon. I think you’d be hard pressed to find a Dutchman who didn’t grow up on hachee in some way. Mainly family recipes. Nowadays it’s near impossible to miss the scent coming from kitchens all over town when walking down the streets of Gouda.

My guess is we blatantly stole the name from the French hâché. Doesn’t make it any less good though. It’s a hearty and laid back beef and onion stew that is traditionally served with (mashed) potatoes and braised red cabbage.

This one’s for your comfort food deluxe file and believe me when I say that the time spent on cooking this will be well worth it. Just put it on your stove on a lazy and cold Sunday afternoon and forget all about it until the scent of Holland fills up your house.


Ingredients:

2 pounds stewing steak
4 big onions
3 tbsp flour
water (about 4 to 5 cups)
2 beef bouillon cubes
2 tbsp molasses (of appelstroop)
2 slightly sweet and sour apples
1 small can tomato paste (3 oz)
1 rosemary sprig
2 bay leaves
4 cloves
10 peppercorns
salt and pepper
butter

Optional: adding a little brown ale or red wine intensifies the flavor of the stew


Directions:

2 pounds stewing steak, cut in roughly 1 inch pieced and pat dry with a paper towel. Meat will not brown properly if damp.
Hachee

4 big onions. This stew relies heavily on onion for flavor. Happy sigh.
Hachee

Give them a rough chop.
Hachee

Season the beef cubes with a generous amount of salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
Hachee

Heat some butter and sauté the beef cubes a few pieces at a time until nicely browned on all sides. Don’t overcrowd the pan or they won’t brown properly.
Hachee

While browning the beef, you also peel the apples. I’ve used Goudreinette, a slightly sweet and more sour apple. Dice them.
Hachee

As soon as the last batch has browned, transfer all the meat to a big Dutch oven. Provided you didn’t start out with a Dutch oven in the first place.
Hachee

Cook the onions. Oh man, there’s nothing I love more than the smell of cooking onions. Okay, the scent of my baby’s hair, but that’s it.
Hachee

They don’t have to be cooked all the way. Just a little browned and translucent is fine. Add them to the beef cubes.
Hachee

Spoon 3 tbsp flour on top, stir in and let it cook for a minute.
Hachee

Stir in the tomato paste and give it an extra minute to sweeten up.
Hachee

Pour in just enough water to submerge the meat.
Hachee

This will end out to be somewhere around 4 to 5 cups.
Hachee

Add the diced apples, thyme (use more thyme if you like) cloves, peppercorns and beef bouillon cubes.
Hachee

If you have trouble finding bouillon cubes that don’t contain MSG, try the whole food shop. They usually have an even more amazing variety including tomato bouillon cubes that are to die for! Well, not literally.

Spike the stew with 2 tbsp molasses (or appelstroop). When you’re in the Netherlands I urge you to add a crumbled up piece of ontbijtkoek. It’s divine.
Hachee

Two or three bay leaves and one fresh rosemary sprig. I think the rosemary makes a huge difference.
Hachee

Depending on how salty the bouillon cubes are add a little extra salt. Remember you can always add more later. I stuck to a tsp.
Hachee

Bring it to a boil. Put the lid on and forget all about it for the next, say 2 and a half to 3 hours. You can stir now and then if you really want to, though.
Hachee

Here’s what mine looked like after 3 hours. Still a bit high on liquid and we want that to be more of a gravy, so I took the lid off and let it cook down.
Hachee

Keep in mind that the longer you’ll cook this stew, the better it will taste! So it’s a perfect stew for your slowcooker as well.

Here’s my personal preference. I use my masher to break up the beef. Then I let it simmer for another 30 to 45 minutes until the gravy had the consistency I was looking for. Check the seasoning and add pepper! A generous amount.
Hachee

Discard the bay leaves, rosemary sprig, cloves and peppercorns. If you can find them, that is.

This was a quick shot taken right at my dinner table: mashed up aromatic beef, gravy, red cabbage and fluffy mashed potatoes. This is the life.
Hachee

Hachee freezes very well, so cook a double batch if you like easy access later on!

Hachee
Ingredients
    2 pounds stewing steak
    4 big onions
    3 tbsp flour
    water (about 4 to 5 cups)
    2 beef bouillon cubes
    2 tbsp molasses (of appelstroop)
    2 slightly sweet and sour apples
    1 small can tomato paste (3 oz)
    1 rosemary sprig
    2 bay leaves
    4 cloves
    10 peppercorns
    salt and pepper
    butter
Directions
    Cut the beef in 1 inch cubes, pat dry with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Dice the onions. peel and dice the apples.

    Heat the butter and brown the beef a few pieces at a time. transfer them all to a Dutch oven and cook the onion until slightly brown and translucent.

    Spoon 3 tbsp flour on top, stir in and let it cook for a minute. Add the tomato paste and give it an extra minute. Pour in enough water to submerge the meat.

    Add the rest of the ingredients and season with a pinch of salt. Simmer the stew for 3 hours. Use a masher to break up the beef if you like. Simmer for another 30 to 45 minutes without the lid on until the gravy is thick enough for you.

    Check the seasoning and add coarsely cracked black pepper.
Meal type: main course
Servings: 4 to 6
Copyright: © kayotickitchen.com
Apr 8, 2010

Lazy Sunday Casserole

The name kinda says it all, doesn’t it? Here’s my lazy Sunday casserole, one that will surely give your taste buds a lift.