⅔ cup olive oil
1 small leek, sliced
2 large shallots, minced
6 garlic cloves, minced
3 medium carrots, diced
2 celery ribs, diced
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons potato starch
1 (750 ml.) bottle of red wine
2 cups vegetable stock or water
Several sprigs of fresh thyme, parsley, rosemary
2 pounds assorted mushrooms
1 cup onions
Freshly cracked pepper
1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
2. Heat a large sauté pan, lightly coated with olive oil, over medium-high heat. Add the leeks, shallots, and garlic to the pan. Cook the mixture until lightly browned.
3. Transfer the mixture to a bowl. Using the same pan, increase the heat and add more oil, if needed. Sauté the carrots and celery until they are caramelized and browned (be sure to do this in batches and not overload the pan or you will not get the deep caramelized flavor or color), about 10 minutes per batch.
4. Add 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pan with the tomato paste potato starch, and cook, stirring constantly, until the paste has darkened and is very fragrant (about 2 minutes). Add the wine, stock or water and herbs. Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook for 45 minutes, until the vegetables are soft and the liquid has reduced by half.
5. Strain out the vegetables and discard, reserving the wine sauce. Return the wine sauce to the pan and place over low heat.
6. Rough chop the mushrooms and then, in a sauté pan lightly coated with olive oil, sauté the mushrooms in batches until they are slightly browned and crispy on their edges and very fragrant. Add them to the wine sauce.
7. Chop the onions and then sauté them in the same pan until they are lightly browned. Add the onions to the mushroom mixture.
8. Stir to coat the mushrooms and onions with the sauce, cover the pan, and place in the preheated oven. Braise for 1 hour.