Beef Shin and Bordeaux Daub – Top Quality Takes Time

If you are planning a ‘quick dinner’, this is not the one for you. If you are thinking of buying a vineyard and making a quick killing, then look elsewhere. If you are buying beef shin and expecting it to be tender in anything under a working day, you are in the wrong place. However, if you are after an unbelievably tasty, flavour packed meal to please a crowd on a winter’s evening, read on my friend, read on. I’ll even tell you a bit about two of Bordeaux’s next generation of winemakers, from Kazakhstan, of all places.

From Astana to Bordeaux

I got my inspiration for this dish from talking with Roman and Katia. We met them on holiday in France earlier in the year. We were on holiday, they are certainly not. They have made a brave decision to leave their beloved Kazakhstan and to forge a new life for their young family in the Bordeaux region of France. They have huge energy and dedication. They have invested in a number of vineyards and are completely committed to developing a sustainable, profitable and enjoyable business.

Roman and Katia and some of the wines from their vineyards.

Being passionate and generous in their business, they very generously gave me some bottles to try. These are the last of the production from the previous owners and they look forward to bringing their own influence to the wine and how it is marketed in future. They have a long term view and realise that the wine business is a fickle master (many vineyards in Bordeaux lost up to 90% of their 2017 harvest due to a late frost). Their passion for wine is infectious and we can only wish them every success in their future.

Vendange Inspired Daub

I wanted to cook something that ties to the grapes. Though this year, the annual harvest, the “vendange” in French, will yield a very small crop, the work will be no easier. After a long day in the fields, a hearty stew is the order of the day. This daub  (slow cooked stew with thick gravy) will feed at least six and really fits the bill.

This is a straightforward daub and is delicious. Do try it.

Ingredients for Beef Shin and Bordeaux Daub

  • 1.5 kilos of bone-in beef shin
  • 4 onions
  • 4 carrots
  • 4 stalks of celery
  • 500 grammes of mushrooms
  • 500ml of top quality beef stock
  • 250ml of red wine
  • 1 tablespoon of flour
  • 1 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon of sweet paprika
  • 3 bay leaves
  • A little oil

The wine in this dish is Chateau Moulin de Bel Air. A gift from Roman and Katia.

Method for Beef Shin and Bordeaux Daub

Trim and slice the onions, carrots, celery and mushrooms into large-ish chunks. (I cut the onions into eights and matched that size roughly with everything else). Cut through the membrane on the edge of the beef shin. This will stop it curling and helps heat distribution when browning. Season the flour with half the salt and pepper. Dust the beef with the seasoned flour.

Though this is to celebrate French agriculture, the beef is 100% Irish, of course.

Heat a large casserole and brown the beef on both sides.

The beef shin is of the highest quality. But, it won’t cook quickly.

Remove the beef. Add the onions and turn the heat down. Place a lid on the casserole and let the onions soften for about 5 minutes. Add the celery and carrots. Cover and soften them for about 5 minutes too. Remove about half of the vegetables. Add in half the beef. Add back the vegetables. Add the balance of the beef. This gives a nice layered effect that will allow a lot of flavour transfer between the ingredients.

The ingredients didn’t fit in the pot initially. A bit of stovetop cooking reduced them.

Place the mushrooms on top and add the balance of the salt and pepper, the paprika, the stock the bay leaves and the wine.

The most important ingredient to celebrate this great wine venture.

Sprinkle the remaining flour over the top. Cover and place this in a 160º (320ºF) oven and leave it for six hours or so.

Glorious Irish/Kazak/French cooking. Try this recipe.

This is an extremely tasty dish. The bones and the marrow add a lovely depth of texture and flavour to the dish. I served it with some floury potatoes. We enjoyed it with a couple of glasses of Chateau Moulin de Bel Air. The wine was a present from our new Kazak friends, the new owners of the vineyard. I hope they continue to produce wines as lovely as this. Try the beef shin and Bordeaux daub. While it takes six hours to cook, you don’t have to stand over it. It is really delicious and like being successful in the wine business, worth the wait.

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Latest comments
  • As my kitchen lies just 15 metres from my office desk, I love putting a daube into the oven and enjoying the aroma all day whilst working – a delicious benefit! Oft for a good eight hours! As I have always made the recipe with cut up best stewing beef and not whole pieces of shin, it will be fun to give this a try. My recipes also don’t use paprika but some form of tomato . . . usually tomato paste, sometimes cut up fresh tomatoes . . . so am looking forwards to the ‘Irish’ version 🙂 !

  • This one certainly seems to contain all the important food groups. I’ll be right round…

  • As a good Bordeaux is my best friend, I jumped over to our government liquor monopoly (Systembolaget) to see if they carry any of Roman and Katia’s wine. Unfortunately, not yet.
    Your daube looks absolutely wonderful. About how thick are the shin pieces cut? Our beef shin is cut much thicker here, so I’ll need to have the butcher cut them up special.

  • Very nice Conor. I think I already mentioned when you posted your first daube that I had never heard of that name before. I’ve only tried beef shin (shank) sous-vide once, and it was a disaster. I should retry and use these flavors.

  • You can’t beat the classics Conor and this looks absolutely wonderful. I can imagine the beautiful aroma in your kitchen.

  • Thanks for the info Conor – Yes the Norwegian liquor stores are very similar to ours here in Sweden.

  • How funny, I made almost this exact same recipe this past weekend with some beef shanks! Except I used an Oregon red wine…and only cooked it five hours. Did I break the rules? 😉

  • I wouldn’t mind coming home to that after a cold day in the shipyard. I know I’m supposed to be all about seafood but..damn!

  • Delicious, can’t beat a good beef stew, especially when it has lashings of red wine. I like the way you left the shin as thick slices, too. Yum.

  • You should look into Oregon wines. They are among the best.

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