French Roast Boeuf With Braised Dandelion Greens

French Roast Boeuf with Braised Dandelion Greens and Winter Radish-Rutabaga Marmalade, adapted from Joe Palma, Westend Bistro

6 pounds French roast, flat iron steak, or London broil
½ cup olive oil
3 tablespoons tomato paste
1 ½ cups celery, coarsely chopped
1 ½ cups carrots, coarsely chopped
2 cups onion, coarsely chopped
1 cup sliced garlic plus 2 cloves garlic
1 bay leaf
1 rosemary sprig
A few sprigs thyme
½ bottle of Cabernet Sauvignon (about 2 cups)
8 cups good beef stock
2 pounds dandelion greens
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1. To make the sauce, cut 2 pounds of the roast into 1-inch cubes. Then add about 4 tablespoons of olive oil to a skillet over a high heat. Roast the meat in the pan for about 10 minutes, stirring frequently and adding olive oil as needed, until the meat is well caramelized.

2. Stir in the tomato paste and mix well. Continue roasting for about 2 to 3 minutes. Add the celery, carrots, onion, all but 2 cloves of the garlic, bay leaf, rosemary, and thyme, stirring frequently. As Palma says, you have to listen to the meat. When the meat is well roasted, add the wine and the beef stock and continue to reduce until you have about 4 cups liquid. Remove and discard the meat, the bay leaf, the rosemary and the thyme. Puree the remaining vegetables with the liquid to achieve a rich thick stock. Set this aside.

3.Preheat the oven to 500 degrees and heat a heavy frying pan with more of the olive oil. Sear the remaining 4 pounds of roast on all sides for about 2 to 3 minutes until caramelized. Then put into the oven in the pan and roast for about 5 to 7 minutes. Remove from the oven and season with salt and pepper to taste. Let the roast rest for a few minutes and then slice.

4. Tear the dandelion greens in half. Heat a little more of the olive oil in a frying pan, add the remaining 2 cloves garlic and the greens, and cook for a minute or two. Sprinkle the greens with salt and pepper.

5. Arrange the greens on a serving platter. Make a puddle of sauce nearby and top with the roast slices. Add a dollop of the radish marmalade and serve immediately.

Yield: 6 to 8 servings.


Winter Radish and Rutabaga Marmalade, adapted from Joe Palma, Westend Bistro

1 pound rutabaga, peeled and cut in ¼ inch dice
½ cup grated radishes
3 cups sugar
4 cups red wine vinegar

1. Put the rutabaga, the radishes, the sugar, and the vinegar in a saucepan and simmer uncovered for about 45 minutes until it attains the consistency of marmalade. Cool and serve as a relish with the meat.

Yield: about 2 cups

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