Braising meat produces a delicious, full-flavored stock whether you use just water or add stock or alcohol. For a simple family meal, water flavored with vegetables, herbs and black peppercorns produces a sufficiently well-flavored dish. However, the addition of stock and/or wine enriches the taste and gives added flavor.
For a really elegant braised dish, set aside the cooked meat and keep it warm, then strain the stock, discarding the vegetables, and reduce it by rapid boiling to a syrupy consistency. Glaze the meat with the reduced sauce and serve with other freshly cooked vegetables.
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