3 lbs of cubed and marbled stewing meat (beef, pork or rabbit)
3 small carrots, cut into two inch pieces
3 celery stalks, diced into two inch pieces
2 large onions, diced
1 bottle good deep red wine
5 to 8 large basil leaves
3 sprigs of rosemary
2 spring of thyme
3 to 5 whole cloves
¼ teaspoon of ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
½ teaspoon salt
3 to 4 tablespoons cake or super fine flour
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 oz. bittersweet chocolate, grated
½ cup heavy cream, at room temperature
½ cup parsley, shredded
- Place the first 12 ingredients in a 2 gallon re-sealable plastic bag. Seal and marinate overnight or up to 24 hours in the refrigerator.
- Pre heat oven to 350º
- Remove the stew meat from the marinade to a paper towel lined plate. Reserve the marinade.
- Pat the meat dry. Sprinkle all sides with flour.
- Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch Oven or an ovenproof casserole. Sear all sides of the stew meat in the hot oil.
- When the meat is browned, sprinkle the grated chocolate over the top and stir well.
- Slowly add the liquid and the vegetables from the marinade to the meat, mixing well.
- Bring the mixed ingredients to a good simmer on the stove top, stirring occasionally.
Cover the Dutch Oven or casserole and place it in the pre-heated oven for approximately an hour and a half. Stir occasionally.
- Remove the Dutch Oven to a safe surface. Extract the woody stems of the rosemary and thyme and discard.
- Using a slotted spoon and fork, extract the remaining vegetables from the pot into a food processor or a blender. You may have to work in batches depending on the size or your blender or processor, so remember to take care as the vegetables will be hot.
- Process or blend the vegetables to a puree.
- Pour about a cup of the puree into a small prep dish and set aside.
- Return the remaining puree to the Dutch Oven.
- Test the meat for tenderness. Accordingly, recover and return the mixture to the oven and continue to cook for up to another 1½ hours.
- When sufficiently tender, remove from the heat.
- Add the cream to the set aside puree, mixing well. Then add the cream mixture to the meat mixture and blend well.
- Place all the ingredients in a serving bowl and garnish with the parsley.
- Serve with either a long, flat pasta or a good crusty bread.
*Mexican mole sauces are frequently made with chocolate. Why not, Central America is the home of the cocoa bean.