I think my Mother’s father was a foodie!
He had a great love of Cypriot delicacies and when I was small I distinctly remember him coming round with a hare, or failing that, a rabbit, in order that my mum could make stifado for him.
His appreciation, I have no doubt, made the ‘labour of love’ distinctly worthwile.
Now, I love it made with either meats, but I find that I tend to make it more with beef cubes as it is more readily available than game.
Stifado is a Greek stew made with the aforementioned meats and plenty of onions…when I say plenty, I really do mean that, there must be twice the weight of onions as there is meat, so for instance, if you make the stifado with 2lb of meat, you must use 4lb of onions!
It’s lovely served with a steaming pile of Basmati rice, though I have heard that in parts of Greece it is more generally served with noodles.
My mother’s recipe is very basic, there are no additions that I have heard about and read about, no red wine, no tomato paste.
Just beef, onions, olive oil and red wine vinegar and a couple of bay leaves…..it couldn’t be any easier.
My Mum’s Stifado
2lb beef stewing steak, cut into medium sized cubes (about the size of a walnut)
4lb Spanish onions, peeled and sliced
Extra-Virgin olive oil (For frying)
1 small wineglass of red wine vinegar
2-3 bay leaves.
1. Fry the beef in plenty of olive oil until well browned, place in the bottom of an ovenproof dish.
2. Fry the onion slices in batches, in the same oil, you want the onion slices to become well browned and golden, this helps with the flavour and colour immeasurably.
3. Place the onions on top of the beef.
4. Pour over the glass of red wine vinegar, season with salt and place 2-3 bay leaves on top also.
5. Cook in a medium oven (Gas mark 3, 170degC, 150degC fan oven) for about 3 hours.
Anna, I've never had Stifado but it looks lovely. I would have to opt for the beef, I just can't do rabbit. Mariax
I'm the other way round – I'm sure it's delicious with beef, but I absolutely love rabbit and wish it was used more often, and was more easily available ! When I go abroad, I always choose rabbit from a menu if I have the opportunity.
One of the most traditional greek dishes!Looks fantastic!xxx
Mmmmm…I can imagine a bit how it would taste. Simple but delicious. It makes me think a bit of an South-Italian (Neapolitan) dish that we use to eat with pasta.
Looks great, I love the way onions go so meltingly soft when they cook slowly.
That's what I call a serious amount of onion. I love simple dishes like this. The next time I get hold of some rabbit then I'll remember this. (Not that I've got anything against beef, of course).
Mmm I love onions-not cutting them but eating them when they're cooked down and sweet like this! And this looks so comforting! 😀
Anna, thanks for this great recipe!!Have a nice day
I am hopeless when it comes to cooking rabbit – always ends up dry. Never had the chance to even taste hare – I imagine it's got a gamier flavour than the farmed rabbit we so often see here in Aus. Does the vinegar help offset the onion flavour Anna? I usually prefer onion as a 'helper' rather than a star:) This may sound crazy, but I am already picturing this as leftovers the next day – on a thick slice of toast…..probably not traditional though?:)
I love stifado! Its my BEST dish ever! Looks yummy!
Mmmm I need to make this 🙂
Coby, you are a mind reader! It's amazing cold or at room temperature, the vinegar sharpens up the meltingly soft, sweet onions.Eleanor, if you like cooked onions, you'll love this!
that has got to be the shortest ingredients list I've seen in a long long while, it's amazing how good food can be so simple. often the simplest foods are the best (:
Shu Han, I think you're spot on! :))
Anna, I love the anecdote about this dish and it's really a lovely simple recipe that must be quite tasty. I'd love to give it a try whenever someone who will honour this dish the same way I will, will be around (ie no vegetarian or kid!)xx