Provençal Beef Stew

Provençal Beef Stew | Daube Recipe

Like many stews, this one–called a daube in France–is best served the next day. In fact, some cooks heat and cool it over several days for maximum flavor. If you can’t wait, no problem. You’ll find it utterly irresistible right out of the pot.–Paula Wolfert

LC Fluent In French Note

“Daube” sounds ridiculously more sophisticated than “beef stew,” doesn’t it? Funny how just about everything sounds more enviable in French, including wine. The best wine to use in this beef stew recipe, er, daube recipe is one from the same region as the ingredients–and no, we don’t mean the wine aisle of your local supermarket. Stick with something from the South of France. A lovely Côtes du Rhône would do quite nicely–and inexpensively.

Provençal Beef Stew | Daube Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 30 M
  • 4 H, 30 M
  • Serves 6


  • 1/2 cup sliced carrots
  • 1/4 cup sliced celery
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons mixed herb: flat-leaf parsley, thyme, crumbled bay leaf, and rosemary or savory
  • 2 teaspoons chopped garlic
  • 2 cups dry red or white wine
  • Salt
  • 12 black peppercorns
  • 1 pound beef shank
  • 1 pound beef short ribs
  • 1 pound grainy beef chuck, cut into small chunks
  • 2 medium onions, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup pancetta, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • 35 ounces canned tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • Bouquet garni of bay leaf, flat-leaf parsley sprigs, and thyme leaves, tied together
  • 1 tablespoon orange zest
  • Parchment paper, cut to fit the inside diameter of the pot
  • 1/4 pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 dozen brine-cured black olives, rinsed and pitted
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat leaf parsley


  • 1. To make the daube, saute the carrots, celery, and onion in the olive oil in a small skillet over low heat. Add the herbs and garlic and continue cooking until the flavors are released. Add the wine, salt, and peppercorns. Bring the liquid to a boil and then reduce and simmer for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool completely.
  • 2. Place the beef cuts in a bowl and pour over the cooled marinade. Cover with foil and refrigerate overnight, turning the meat once or twice.
  • 3. Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C). Place the meat and the marinade in a heavy casserole or Dutch oven with a tight-fitting lid. Scatter the sliced onions and then add the pancetta, tomatoes, bouquet garni, and orange zest. Wet the parchment circle and place it on top, pressing down to remove any air bubbles. Cover and cook for one hour. Lower the temperature to 250°F (120°C) and cook an additional 3 to 4 hours, until the meat falls apart easily.
  • 4. Set the pot on top of the stove over very low heat. Remove the parchment and stir in the mushrooms and olives. Cook until the mushrooms are tender, about 10 minutes. Remove the bouquet garni and skim the fat from the top of the cooking liquid. Adjust the seasoning. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve over cooked noodles.
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  1. The recipe sounds delicious and I’m making a larger amount of this dish. I have the meat marinating in the frig since yesterday (Thursday), but now I’m thinking I’d like to serve this at a gathering on Sunday and wonder:

    1. Will the food keep that long?

    2. If so, am I better to finish cooking the recipe today, or should I keep the meat marinating and finish the cooking on Sunday?

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