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A Tuscan Classic

Peposo

Peposo. How we love this slow-cooked, peppery beef stew. The story behind this dish dates back to the days of the Renaissance architect Filippo Brunelleschi.

600 years ago, back in 1420, Brunelleschi was seeking out the tiles to create the dome of the world-famous Duomo of Florence, which brought him to the skilled artisans of Impruneta. The craftsmen in this small, hillside town near Florence were tasked with firing up their furnaces and making the red terracotta tiles that ended up covering the impressive cupola.
 
The story goes that these artisans would cook up a stew of beef, lots of wine and black peppercorns in a terracotta dish in their furnaces while working and Brunelleschi became enamored with the dish – and for good reason.
 
The original recipe called for a few simple ingredients but it has evolved over the years. Nowadays you might see some chefs and restaurants prepare Peposo with tomatoes but this does not follow the traditional recipe as the import of tomatoes came after Brunelleschi’s time.
 
Laura prepared her traditional Peposo in a recent Live Cooking Demo on Facebook with polenta, however baked potatoes, mashed potatoes or a potato purée are also splendid sides. 
 
Now our Sei Chianti Classico Gran Selezione is the ultimate pairing with Peposo but the Podalirio Merlot would certainly compliment this peppery stew quite nicely.
 
It’s best to cook Peposo in a large terracotta dish or terrine but you can also use a round, cast iron casserole dish or a crock pot. 
 
WATCH COOKING DEMO

INGREDIENTS – Serves 4-5
1 kg beef (lean & shoulder preferred)
1 tbsp black pepper
3 garlic cloves
1 glass water
Red wine (enough to cover the meat)

  1. Cut or have your butcher cut the meat into cubes. 
  2. Remove the skins from the garlic cloves and get rid of the germ (green center).
  3. Mix the beef, black pepper and garlic together in the terracotta pot.
  4. Add the red wine until it completely covers the meat. Then add about 1 cup of water and put the cover on the pot.
  5. Cook in the oven slowly at 150 °C for 2-3 hours. 
  6. The meat is ready when it’s soft and melts in your mouth.

You can serve the Peposo on top of your mashed, baked or puréed potatoes or polenta or generously spoon it onto the side – whichever you prefer! Another way to serve the Peposo is in a bowl with plenty of toasted pieces of Tuscan bread on the side to sop up the incredibly tasty sauce.

Buon Appetito!!  

 

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