- 1 kg / 2.2 lbs beef cheeks or chuck trimmed and cut into large chunks
- 4 onions, sliced
- 4 large cloves garlic, smashed
- few sprigs of thyme
- 2 cups good quality red wine
- 1 litre (4 cups) water
- 2 star anise
- 500 g / 1 lb mushrooms – quartered/halved (see notes)
Spelt and olive oil shortcrust:
- Combine 125 g (1 cup) wholemeal spelt flour with 2 tablespoons olive oil, ¼ cup (60 ml) water and a pinch sea salt.
- Form a soft dough and rest for 30 minutes.
- Divide into 4 pieces and roll each piece into thin round disks between 2 sheets of greaseproof paper.
- Brush the top of each disk with a beaten egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
- Bake for 20 minutes 180°C. Use as required.
Gluten Free shortcrust:
- Combine 2 cups (200g) almond meal, ½ cup sesame seeds (reserving some to garnish tops), a pinch of sea salt and 2 tablespoons of ground flaxseed.
- Add 1 organic egg and 2-3 tbsp water to mix into a soft dough.
- Divide dough into small portions and roll each portion into round disks between 2 sheets of greaseproof paper.
- rush the top of each disk with a beaten egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
- Bake for 20 minutes at 180°C and enjoy as needed.
- Preheat the oven to 150°C.
- Heat a large frying pan over medium heat and brown the beef on each side for a few minutes.
- Place the beef in a heavy-based/cast iron casserole dish.
- Deglaze the frying pan by adding 2 cups of red wine then add it to the casserole dish.
- Clean your frying pan and sauté the onions over medium heat until golden brown.
- Add the onions, mushrooms, thyme, star anise and water to the casserole dish and stir well.
- Cover well with foil so all sides are completely sealed.
- Cook for approx 3 – 4 hours or until the beef is tender and the sauce has thickened. Check halfway through and add a little more water or beef stock if required.
- Taste and check, season with a little sea salt and pepper if required.
- Thicken if necessary by reducing the stock or by mixing in 1 – 2 teaspoons arrowroot dissolved in a little water.
- Enjoy with or without the short-crust pastry.