Portuguese braised steak & onions

In Portugal this braise would be served with fried potatoes or rice, but it goes just as well with a pillow of buttery mash

  • Prep:15 mins
    Cook:2 hrs 20 mins
  • Serves 4
  • Easy

Nutrition per serving

  • kcal 430
  • fat 23g
  • saturates 8g
  • carbs 11g
  • sugars 8g
  • fibre 2g
  • protein 44g
  • salt 0.46g


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 4 braising steaks, about 200g/8oz each
  • 4 tbsp red wine vinegar
  • 3 onions, finely sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • ½ tsp paprika
  • 100ml red wine
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 1 tsp tomato purée
  • 2 bay leaves
  • chopped coriander, to serve


Braising steak
For the best-quality beef at the cheapest prices, opt for braising cuts. Although different cuts are sold as braising steak, some work better than others. If you want to cook a whole piece of meat, as in this recipe, use the flank or skirt – also known as feather blade. If you want diced meat for stew, the best cut is shin. In supermarkets, where labels don’t state cuts, look for meat that isn’t too lean and has a good proportion of fat and muscle running through it.


  1. Heat oven to 140C/120C fan/gas 1. Heat half the oil in a shallow casserole dish. Brown the steaks well on each side, then remove from the pan. Splash the vinegar into the pan and let it bubble and almost evaporate. Add the rest of the olive oil and the onion, and gently fry on a medium heat for 10-15 mins until softened and starting to colour.

  2. Once the onion has softened, stir in the garlic and the paprika. Cook for 1 min more, tip in the red wine and chopped tomatoes, then stir through the tomato purée and bay leaves. Season, pop the steaks back into the pan, then cover and place in the oven for 2 hrs, stirring halfway through and adding a splash of water if needed. Cook until the meat is very tender. The stew can now be cooled and chilled for 2 days and reheated or frozen for up to 3 months. To serve, scatter with coriander.

Suggested recipes from this collection...