Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Dutch Oven Parmesan Garlic Beef Chunks (Brazilian Style)

This recipe and story is from my Dutch oven cookbook, "Around the World in a Dutch Oven"

My wife and I went to this Brazilian BBQ house a couple of weeks ago.  I always love the exotic meats they make, and I love how they bring them by your table.  Delicious stuff, and I want to learn how to make each one!

This time, one stood out for me.  It was a delicious combination of garlic and Parmesan cheese.  I had never tasted that on a chunk of steak before.  I was enthralled.  I wanted to figure it out, so every time the waiter brought it by I got, like, three chunks.  I felt like a pig, but I had to get the tastes.

Then I had to adapt it to the Dutch oven, because it’s not being turned on a spit.  I wasn’t quite sure how to do that.  At what point should I add the Parmesan and the garlic?  As a sort of sauce at the end, or should I cook the steaks with it on?

These are the things that keep me up at night.  Most definitely a first world problem...

Dutch Oven Parmesan Garlic Beef Chunks

The Meat

12” Dutch Oven
20-22 coals below

  • 2 ½ lbs beef steak or roast
  • 1 tbsp salt
  • 1 tbsp pepper
  • ½ tbsp paprika

The Parmesan Garlic Drizzle

8” Dutch oven
10-12 coals below

  • ¼ cup butter
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • Several very liberal shakes of Parmesan cheese

The Potato & Veggie Side Dish

10” Dutch Oven
16-18 coals below

  • 2-3 Medium Potatoes
  • 1 medium onion
  • 2 sweet peppers (of different colors
  • Olive Oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Parsley

Since you’re going to have three Dutch ovens going to make this meal, you’ll want to start a lot of coals.

I started with a nice roast and cut it into squares about an inch to an inch and a half square.  Think about a good shish-kabob size.  I seasoned the chunks by putting them in a zip-top baggie with the seasonings, and shaking them up.  I let them sit to absorb the flavors.

In the meantime, I started slicing up the veggies and potatoes for the side dish.  Somewhere in all of this, I also spritzed the inside of the 10 and 12 inch Dutch ovens with a thin layer of oil, and set them out on the coals to preheat.

I took out the veggies and meat.  Then I added a drizzle of olive oil to each Dutch oven, and let that heat to shimmering.  I tossed the meat into the 12” and the veggies into the 10”, and gave both a stir to coat the food with the oil.  I put a lid on the 10”, and divided the coals evenly above and below, to bake the potatoes.

At that point, I had to pay close attention to the meat.  I wanted to sear it, and also to cook it to about a medium or medium-rare done-ness.  Unfortunately, I found that my thermometers didn’t work so well in such small pieces of meat.  So, I just had to stir and guess.  It didn’t take long.  I pulled them off the coals, and put them on a plate under some aluminum foil to rest and settle.

In between all of that, I had minced up the garlic  I and added it, the butter, and the Parmesan cheese to the 8” Dutch oven.  I put that on the coals, not so much to cook, but to melt and blend.

Soon the potatoes were done and it was time to assemble it all and serve it up.  I put a few chunks of meat on each plate, brushed on the butter sauce (being very liberal with the cheese and the garlic chunks), and plated the veggies along side.

It was amazing, and I dare say that I nailed the flavor match to the restaurant!  I was amazed at both how elegant and exotic it looked, and, at the same time, how simple the recipe was.

There are more great easy recipes for dutch ovens and Dutch oven recipes: Chicken.


Mark has discovered a love of Dutch Oven Cooking. Mark also has other sites and blogs, including MarkHansenMusic.com and his MoBoy blog.


  1. Mark, I love the fact that you add the amount of coals to use, and where to place them on your campfire cooking recipes for dutch oven cooking. You have quite a few good looking recipes, and I can't wait to start trying them. I also appreciate the advice you give on the webinars, that is where I got to know you.

  2. Very good dish. Thanks for sharing it. I made this for dinner tonight. Unfortunately I don't have the space to cook with 2 dutch ovens at a time, so the vegetables were cooked in the oven.

    Definitely a repeater.



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