20g dried porcini mushrooms
1 cup boiling water
¼ cup olive oil
1.6kg chuck or gravy beef, trimmed
3 large red onions, diced
3 carrots, diced
4 sticks celery, diced
250g mild flat pancetta, diced
2 bay leaves
2 Tbsp tomato paste
2 tsp caster sugar
750ml red wine or chianti
400g can diced tomatoes (or 700g vine-ripened tomatoes, chopped)
1 beef stock cube
800g small chat potatoes
125g butter, softened
40g Peppadew Hot Whole Sweet Piquante Peppers, drained, finely chopped
1 long baguette
¼ cup roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley, to serve
Put mushrooms in a bowl and cover with boiling water. Stand for 10 minutes or until softened. Drain through a fine sieve over a bowl, reserving liquid. Pat mushroom dry with paper towel and roughly chop.
Heat 1 Tbsp of the oil in a large deep flameproof casserole dish over a medium heat. Add beef, 1-2 pieces at a time, and cook for 4 minutes on each side or until browned. Transfer to an oven tray. Repeat to cook remaining beef.
Heat remaining oil in dish. Add onion, carrot, celery, pancetta and bay leaves. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until tender. Stir in tomato paste and sugar. Cook for minute, then add mushroom, reserved mushroom liquid, wine, tomato and stock cube. Bring to the boil, add beef, then reduce to heat to medium-low and cover. Cook for 2½ hours, stirring occasionally, or until meat is tender.
Remove beef from dish and shred with 2 forks, then return to dish. Increase heat to medium and add potatoes. Cook, uncovered, for 45 minutes or until potatoes are tender.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 200°C. Diagonally slice baguette at 4cm intervals, taking care not to cut all the way through. Combine butter, peppers and parmesan in a bowl and spoon mixture into slashes in bread. Put baguette on a large oven tray. Bake for 10 minutes or until crisp and golden. Top stew with parsley and serve with baguette.