Braising means cooking meat very slowly in a little liquid in a thick cooking utensils, casserole or pot with a tight cover to keep the steam in.

The procedure is as follows:

• The meat is browned first in a little fat, often its own, sear the surfaces and thus seal in the meat juices.

• The meat is transferred to a pot, add a little liquid (one cup for every 1/2 kilogram of meat) which may be broth, water, vegetable or fruit juice, wine, or a combination of two or three of these is added.

• The pot is covered and the meat simmered until tender.

The French usually add a sprig of parsley, laurel leaf, sprig of thyme, or a pinch of thyme powder in a small cheesecloth bag which is discarded later and a stick of celery, or any of the herbs. To thicken the gravy or sauce add flour and butter kneaded into dough and formed into small balls which are added, one by one, to the boiling gravy and stirred, until the desired thickness is achieved.

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