Any southern frietkraam worth its name will offer "friet zuurvlees", preferably a homemade zuurvlees. Especially the city of Maastricht is famous for it, so as soon as the opportunity arose I took off to the Markt where I was told I could get a fantastic sample of my favorite food. Well.......not so much. The sauce was thin and riddled with dark specs, which I have yet to identify, and the flavor was off: not sour, not sweet.....it just tasted like a canned, watered-down version of the real stuff.
So, I figured it was time to hit the pots and pans again and make grandma Pauline's zuurvlees: nice chunky pieces of beef, and a thick gravy that clings to every golden french fry on my plate. Yum!!
2 lb beef chuck roast, cubed
1 large onion, peeled and sliced
1 cup white wine vinegar
2 cups of water
2 bay leaves
5 black peppercorns
2 cloves, whole
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon appelstroop
2 slices ontbijtkoek
Put the beef in a non-reactive bowl, place the slices of onion on top and cover with the vinegar and the water. Add two bay leaves, the peppercorns and the two whole cloves, cover and marinate for at least four hours, but preferably overnight. Make sure to stir the meat once or twice during this time so that all pieces have an opportunity to marinate.
Serve hot over a plate of homemade patat and enjoy!