Stracotto Alla Florentina

Pot Roast Florentine Style


– Salt

– Black pepper

– Olivia oil

– Red wine

– Dried porcini, soaked in red wine

– Canned tomatoes

– Odori

– Garlic, smashed

– Beef broth

– Eye round of beef


-Ask the butcher to trim all the extra fat from the meat, leaving just enough for braising. Preheat the oven to medium. Season the beef with salt and pepper. Using a snug oval pan if you can; otherwise, you’ll have to use a lot of liquid. Dampen the bottom of the pan with a little olive oil. (The olive oil is not for cooking in this case; it’s just to keep the meat from sticking.)

– Turn the heat up very high and brown the meat on all sides. There will be some smoke, but don’t worry about it. The meat should be browned until it’s practically burnt. The bottom of the pan will start to turn a dark color because the essence of the Stracotto, the fat and extra liquid, is collecting there. Don’t get scared; that’s the honey of the dish. It’s important in creating the right taste.

– Once the meat is brown, take it out of the pan and set it aside. In the same pan, place a thin later of odori and the garlic. Brown them over high  heat and add ust enough wine to life all the good stuff off the bottom of the pan. Put the meat back iin the pan, set it over high heat and let it absorb the scent and taste of the vegetables. After a minute, when you see the vegetables sticking to the meat, add wine of broth – or both – to cover the meat. ( Use about 1 bottle of wine for 4 people because a lot of wine evaporates in cooking.)

– Add the porcini and the soaking wine to the pan and bring everything to a boil. Cover and put in the oven. Cook the Stracotto for about 2 hours, or until you can penetrate the meat with a fork.

– Take the meat out, slice it, and set it aside. Add a scoop of tomatoes to the sauce, boil for a few minutes, and then put the meat back in pot. Let it cook another few minutes and serve it with good bread