My father used to make this back in the 80s, and now my mother and brother make it. It was modified slightly from Elizabeth David's "Beef and Wine Stew with Black Olives" in French Provençal Cooking. I've never made it myself, but now that we have an herb garden, maybe I will.


2 lbs chuck or rump roast (rump is preferred and less fatty)
1-2 Tbsp. olive oil
pat of butter
4 Tbsp. Brandy (or Scotch)
4-6 oz red wine
Bouquet of fresh thyme, parsely, bay leaf
Strip of orange peel
4 crushed garlic cloves
6 oz pitted black olives
Salt and fresh ground pepper

Cut up roast into 1 inch cubes
Brown meat (in 2 or 3 batches so it doesn't get too watery) in olive oil and butter

After you've browned all the meat, put it all back in the pot
Warm 4 Tbsp. of Brandy in a soup ladle that's placed in the center of the cooking meat.
Pour the Brandy over the meat, and quickly light on fire (using a flaming chopstick) to melt the fat.

Add the red wine and let bubble for 30 seconds
Add the salt and freshly ground pepper
Add herb bouquet and orange peel

Cook as low as possible for about 2 hours
Remove bouquet and add olives

Serve with yams or potatoes and sauteed greens.

Bon Appetite!

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