Beef Caldereta

I have decided that I need to start cataloging recipes that significantly diverge from any written recipe I currently possess and for which I believe my version is superior.

I have never had beef caldereta before making it myself.  This situation, that my first taste of an ethnic dish comes from my kitchen, is surprisingly common despite residing in a large city with a diverse assortment of very good ethnic food.  For those unfamiliar with the dish, it is a Filipino beef stew the distinguishing feature of which is the addition of pureed liver to the dish.  Liver has really become a favored protein for me, it has rich meaty flavor and adds tons of umami and was really the reason I made this dish.  Otherwise it’s pretty standard beef stew.

2 lb of beef chuck or shank
2 tbsp flour
6 oz liver, pork or chicken
1 onion, diced
1 red bell pepper, diced
1 poblano pepper, diced
4 cloves of garlic, minced
1 tbsp shrimp paste
1 tbsp tomato paste
dried chiles to taste
1 c red wine
1/4 c soy sauce
14 oz can of tomatoes
2 c of stock, add gelatin if needed
2 bay leaves
1 tsp pepper
8 oz carrot, stew size chunk
8 oz potato, stew size chunks
8 oz frozen pearl onions

Preheat oven to 300 degrees Celsius.  Brown both sides of beef, remove from pan and cut into large chunks and toss with flour.

Heat oil in dutch oven until smoking and add well dried livers.  Cook until well browned and remove.  Puree tomatoes, stock, soy sauce and livers together.

Saute onions, peppers and garlic until soft.  Add shrimp paste, tomato paste and dried chiles and continue cooking until pastes start to brown.  Add wine and cook scraping pan until most of it has evaporated.  Add soy sauce, tomatoes, stock, livers and bay leaves and pepper and bring back to a simmer.  Stir in floured beef and make sure it is simmering again before placing it in the oven, partially covered.  Cook for an hour and 30 minutes before adding carrots,  potatoes and pearl onions to pot and stirring to combine.  Cook for another hour in the oven.

Check for seasoning of salt, pepper and chiles.  Feel free to add more and different vegetables to stew.

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