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17.01.2017

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A delicious slow cooked beef in tomato sauce with pomegranate juice and sultanas. The sauce it produces is just amazing, and you definitely need a side with good “mopping” capacity. In this house, it’s mashed potatoes that do the mopping.

Slow Cooker Pomegranate and Tomato Beef with Sultanas www.thefoodiecorner.gr Photo description: Close up side view of a plate of beef over mashed potatoes with some pomegranate arils sprinkled on top. The antique plate has a pretty design around the edge and is sitting on a wooden background. Behind the plate are some pomegranates, one of them broken open to reveal the arils inside. A couple of sprigs of thyme decorate the meat.

This is one of the first recipes I made successfully in the slow cooker. When Mrs. D. first brought mine over from England, I searched and searched for recipes that didn’t have a condensed soup of some kind as the main ingredient. I was beginning to lose hope when I stumbled on Stephanie O’Dea’s blog A Year of Slow Cooking. She is the queen of the crockpot in my opinion. I was so happy to find recipes with “normal” ingredients, most of which I too could find in my local supermarket here in Greece. This particular recipe is originally from another blog, Gluten Free Goddess, but I’m mentioning Steph’s since it’s where I found it. And if you’re into slow cooking you need to check out her adventures.

Slow Cooker Pomegranate and Tomato Beef with Sultanas www.thefoodiecorner.gr Photo description: Pomegranates on a wooden background. One of them broken in two, the arils falling out onto the wood. Some more arils scattered towards the bottom of the photo. Light coming in from the left casting a dark shadow on the whole pomegranate.

So, the recipe. It’s amazing. Beef cooked slowly in a tomato based sauce with pomegranate juice and sultanas. Who would have thought that this combo works so well? I would never have tried tomato with pomegranate, they just don’t seem to pair well in theory. In practice though, well that’s a whole other story. The pomegranate gives a slight tang and deepens the flavour of the meat immensely. The sultanas soak up liquid and become these little juicy taste bombs that explode in your mouth. The sauce, oh my, the sauce thickens into this delicious dark meaty gravy, of which you can’t bear to waste even a drop. Thus, the best way to enjoy it is with mashed potatoes. What else can help you scoop up every last bit of sauce off your plate? Yes you can serve the pomegranate beef with pasta or rice, but, neither will allow for a plate wiped completely clean at the end of your meal. Mash it is then. Enjoy!

Slow Cooker Pomegranate and Tomato Beef with Sultanas www.thefoodiecorner.gr Photo description: Three quarter view of a plate of beef over mashed potatoes with some pomegranate arils sprinkled on top. The antique plate has a pretty design around the edge and is sitting on a wooden background. Behind the plate are some pomegranates, one of them broken open to reveal the arils inside. A couple of sprigs of thyme decorate the meat.

Ingredients

1 onion, medium, finely chopped

1/2 tsp garlic paste (see here for home made)

2 Tbs olive oil plus extra for searing

800gr beef, cut into large pieces (I used shank and it worked really well)

400gr (1 tin) chopped tomatoes

2 Tbs water to rinse the tin

3 Tbs honey

240ml (1 cup) pomegranate juice (100% natural)

4 Tbs balsamic vinegar

120ml (1/2 cup) sultanas

3/4 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper, freshly ground

1/4 tsp thyme

1/4 tsp tarragon

1/4 tsp basil

1/4 tsp oregano

1/8 tsp cinnamon

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You can substitute the herbs for an Italian or French herb mix.

Step 1

Mix the onion, garlic and 2 tablespoons of olive oil in the bottom of the slow cooker insert.

Step 2

Heat the extra olive oil in a large pan on high, and sear the meat on all sides till nicely browned. Place meat in the slow cooker.

Step 3

Put the tomatoes in the hot pan, rinse the tin with the water and add that too. Scrape the bottom of the pan to get any meaty bits up. Add the honey and stir so it melts into the tomato. Pour into the slow cooker over the meat.

Step 4

Add the pomegranate juice, balsamic vinegar, sultanas, salt and pepper, herbs and cinnamon to the insert. Cook on low for 9 to 11 hours or until the meat falls apart and the sauce has thickened a bit.

Note: I checked mine at 8 hours and decided to leave it for another hour. Then I forgot it and turned it off after a total of 11 hours. It was delish.

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