Beef With Chestnut Stew
Chestnuts lend a sweet flavor to this basic Asian stew recipe.
2 tablespoons olive or other vegetable oil
1/2 white onion, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon finely minced or crushed garlic
2 pounds stewing beef, cut into cubes
4 cups water, or 1 cup beef broth and 3 cups water
2 teaspoons Chinese rice wine or dry sherry
2 tablespoons hoisin sauce
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1/2 pound shelled and peeled chestnuts
1 tablespoon light soy sauce
1 tablespoon dark soy sauce
1 teaspoon brown sugar, or to taste
Freshly ground black or white pepper, to taste
Heat the oil in a large saucepan or Dutch oven over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute until the onion is softened. Add the beef and brown. (Cook the beef in 2 batches if necessary).
Add the water and the beef broth if using. Heat to boiling.
Stir in the rice wine or sherry, hoisin sauce and tomato paste. Add the chestnuts.
Simmer, covered, for 1 hour. Add the light and dark soy sauce and the sugar. Cook for another 30 minutes, or until the beef is tender. Serve hot.