Braised Beef with Horseradish

Come cold weather, i find nothing more satisfying than slow cooked foods and take my word for it, there aren’t that many things – vegetable or animal – that won’t benefit from a slow simmering soak in some aromatic liquid, myself included. If there was some decadent spa treatment consisting in immersing oneself in melted fine belgian chocolate i would be there in a heartbeat. My decadent tendencies don’t stop there and would certainly make Cleopatra blush in her butter bath but i need to get back to the subject of this post: braising.

This Serious Eats video on the art of braising features Daniel Boulud (yes again!) because when it comes to braising i believe nobody’s does it better. It’s with a certain envy i watched the beef bottom-round go into the braising pan containing aromatic vegetables with a generous splash of vodka and come out as a ‘spoonable beef’ several hours later accentuated by a fresh horseradish whipped cream. Enjoy the master class and try this Russian inspired recipe for yourself. And while you’re at it, get yourself the book because it contains lots of other great braising recipes. Braise: A Journey Through International Cuisine

(Makes 6 servings)

  • One 3-pound beef bottom round
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, cut into large dice
  • 20 juniper berries
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
  • 3/4 cup vodka
  • 3/4 cup red wine
  • 2 medium parsnips, peeled, trimmed, and cut into large dice
  • 1 large turnip, peeled, trimmed, and cut into large dice
  • 1/4 celery root, peeled, trimmed, and cut into large dice
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 tablespoons chopped dill
  • 5 ounces finely grated fresh horseradish
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

  1. Center a rack in the oven and preheat the oven to 300°F.
  2. Pat the beef dry and season with salt and pepper. Dust the beef with the flour. Warm the olive oil in a cast-iron pot over high heat. Add the beef and sear until golden brown on all sides, 12 to 15 minutes. Remove the beef from the pot.
  3. Add the onion, juniper berries, and black pepper, and sweat, without color, for 6 to 8 minutes. Add the tomato paste and red wine vinegar and cook until almost all of the liquid has evaporated. Add the vodka and red wine and bring to the boil. Add the parsnips, turnip, celery root, bay leaves, dill, 4 ounces of the horseradish, and 2 cups water.
  4. Return the beef to the pot and bring to the simmer. Cover and bake for 2 1/2 hours.
  5. Meanwhile, whip the heavy cream to medium peaks and stir in the remaining 1 ounce grated horseradish; season to taste with salt and pepper.
    Serve the beef with the horseradish-whipped cream on the side.
Be Sociable, Share!

  • AzAzura

    You know what Zen Chef? You are one helluva good writer , you are witty and I love reading your thoughts .I laughed reading the intro of this one and I will be there diving in the chocolate too!
    Oh yes! braised beef and horseradish, I love em’ already.

  • Claude-Olivier

    A nouveau un coup de plume bien perso que j’aime bcp…quant à la recette, je te fais confiance, ca doit bien passé ,-) avec un bon petit coup de rouge ^^! Ciao

  • waliz

    i love meat and of course i will love ths braised beef..thts for sure!!

  • Ann

    So do you have a nice big claw-foot tub? Or must I imagine you rubbing chocolate on in the shower? :-)

    Fresh horseradish whipped cream. Wow.

  • Cindy. Lo.

    That looks awesome!
    One problem though..
    Vodka can’t never last long enough for me to use in cooking in my household….

  • CookiePie

    Please! I would eat braised shoelaces if they had horseradish whipped cream on them! As for being bathed in chocolate, how about this:

    I thought the Chocolate Fondue Wrap sounded particularly, well, delicious :)

  • Zen Chef

    Thank you Azazura! :-) Let’s dive in that big pool of melted chocolate! Haha

  • Zen Chef

    Merci Claude! Je prepare le braise de boeuf et t’amene les bouteilles. Deal? :-)

  • Zen Chef

    Ahhh Waliz! That makes me happy! :-)
    What else can I cook for you?

  • Zen Chef

    Ann, hahaha… For some reason rubbing chocolate in the shower doesn’t sound as appealing. I don’t know why! :-)

  • Zen Chef

    Cindy, I have that problem too! Hehe That’s why you have to buy it at the last moment! :-)

  • Zen Chef

    Cookiepie! They DO have a chocolate spa?!
    I’m heading to it right now! :-) Thanks!!!

  • Colleen

    I thought I read somewhere about a spa in France that one can soak in a chocolate bath. Voila!

  • Susan from Food Blogga

    Great post on braising here. Thanks for sharing. Of course, I keep thinking how sublime it would be to be immersed in a tubfull of chocolate. 😉

  • foodhuntress79

    I was at the office surrounded by chefs when I watched this video. They thought I was seriously buried into “further education” – not knowing that I was getting my favorite entertainment :) . But honestly, Iron Chef, er, Zen, your page is very helpful. By the way, our form here of horseradish use is the leaves – the Japanese horseradish tree leaves- quite popular in traditional Asian household cooking. Though I sure love fish hamburgers with horseradish sauce. 😉

  • b

    I am not very familiar with braising but I love beef and something tells me that I would enjoy this, although horseradish whipped cream has me a bit hesitant! :)

    This post reminds me why I love living in a seasonal climate. The seasons inspire different preferences for food, cocktails, lifestyle habits. Winter definitely begs for comfort foods like this… wonderful, isn’t it?

  • Zen Chef

    Colleen, i have to find more infos about this! Sounds like my kind of vacations. Thanks for the tip!

  • Zen Chef

    I know Susan…i just can’t stop thinking about that big tub of chocolate now! Thanks for stopping by! :-)

  • Zen Chef

    Foodhuntress, i’m glad i gave you an alibi for your little escape! haha
    Thank you for the note on horseradish, the fish hamburgers with horseradish sauce you’ve mentioned sound delicious. I’m hungry now! Can you hear my stomach going Grrrrrr? :-)

  • Zen Chef

    B, i agree with you on seasonal climates.
    Braising is my favorite cooking technique. Especially during winter because it’s so comforting. Many people are put off by horseradish but you should try it, it makes the food sing, really! :-)

  • Tartelette

    Dang he looks like my uncle…which could make you my cousin…trouble trouble.
    Oh yeah, the recipe: well it is 1.15am here and I am wondering if they could be ready for breakfast!
    Love it!