Most braises follow the same basic steps. The food to be braised is first seared over high heat, typically in the same braising pot to be used for the entire recipe. Searing caramelizes the surface of the meat, introducing a complex flavor to the entire dish. A small amount of cooking liquid, that often includes an acidic element, such as tomatoes, beer or wine, is added to the pot with stock or water. The dish is then covered and cooked at a very low simmer on the stovetop or in the oven, until the meat is fork tender which can take two to four hours, depending on the cut of meat.
Popular braising dishes include Coq au Vin, pot roast, beef stew, Swiss steak, chicken cacciatore, goulash, and beef bourguignon, to name a few.
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