Description (Some HTML is OK)
The gratin is cooked long and slow, so that it can go into the oven with the ox cheeks. Even if there are only 2 of you ... this is a great batch to make for leftovers as it tastes even better on the 2nd day!
Makes 6 servings
- OX CHEEKS
- 2tbsp plain flour
- 1.5kg ox cheeks, trimmed of fat
- 2 1⁄2 tbsp olive oil
- 2 red onions, peeled and chopped
- 2 smoked bacon rashers, chopped
- 1 bay leaf
- 3 thyme sprigs
- 300ml beef stock
- 400ml red wine, such as burgundy
- 500g Chatenay carrots, scrubbed
- 25g butter
- 800g parsnips, peeled and sliced into coins
- 2 garlic cloves
- 400ml half-fat crème fraîche
- 100ml light beef or vegetable stock
- A pinch freshly grated nutmeg
Preparation (Some HTML is OK)
1. Preheat the oven to 150C
2. Season the flour, tip it onto a plate and use it to coat the ox cheeks. Heat the oil in a casserole; sear the cheeks for 5 minutes, until golden. Remove to a plate. Cook the onions and bacon in the casserole for 5 minutes, stirring, then add ox cheeks and the other ingredients (bar one thyme sprig and the carrots) and cover.
3. Meanwhile, use half the butter to grease a gratin dish and spread a third of the parsnips over the base. Mix the garlic, crème fraîche, stock and nutmeg; season and pour some into the dish. Continue layering the parsnips and liquid until all is used up. Dot with the remaining butter, cover with foil and bake in the oven with the ox cheeks.
4. After 2 1/4 hours, remove the foil from the gratin and cook for a further 45 minutes. Tip the carrots into the casserole and cook for a further 45 minutes, until the cheeks are truly tender. Garnish the casserole with the remaining thyme and serve with the gratin.
Optional: next time we will probably put some new potatoes in at the same time as the carrots as an alternative to the parsnip gratin.