2.25 pounds beef chuck cut into about 3 inch chunks
24 shallots, peeled and left whole
1/2 cup olive oil
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 cup beef stock or water
1 (22 ounce) can tomatoes
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/2 teaspoon sugar
2 bay leaves
1 cinnamon stick
2-3 whole cloves
salt and pepper to taste
1 and 1/2 cups water
pinch red pepper flakes
In a pot, heat the oil over medium heat and add the peeled onions. Sauté for 5-10 minutes or until golden and soft. Remove the onions and set aside.
Brown the beef in two batches in the pot. Do not add all the beef at once into the pot otherwise it will create too much steam and it will not brown properly. Do this in 2-3 batches.
Place all of the browned beef back into the pot. Add all of the ingredients except the onions.
Bring to a boil. Reduce to simmer.
Simmer for 1 hour 15 minutes or until the sauce has thickened and the beef is tender.
Check the seasoning and add some more salt if needed.
Add the onions to the pot and shake it a bit so that they can settle in the stew. Stirring may cause them to fall apart.
Simmer for 30 minutes more.
Serve with rice, hearty bread or mashed potatoes.