10 sprigs fresh thyme, plus 1 tablespoon chopped leaves
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon juniper berries (available in the spice aisle)
1 teaspoon black peppercorns
1/2 teaspoon whole cloves
1 3-to-4-pound boneless beef top chuck roast
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 medium carrots, cut into 1-inch chunks
2 stalks celery, cut into 1-inch chunks
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons crushed gingersnap cookies
Freshly ground pepper
Spaetzle, for serving
Sour cream, for serving (optional)
Chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
Combine 2 cups broth, the wine, vinegar, 1 chopped onion, the crushed garlic, thyme sprigs, bay leaves, juniper berries, peppercorns and cloves in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 5 minutes. Cool to room temperature. Place the beef in a large resealable plastic bag and pour in the marinade. Seal the bag and refrigerate for 2 to 3 days, turning daily.
Preheat the oven to 350. Remove the meat from the marinade and pat dry; season with salt. Strain the marinade, discarding the solids. Heat a large ovenproof pot over medium heat and add the olive oil. Add the meat and brown on all sides, 10 to 12 minutes, then transfer to a plate. Add the carrots, celery and the remaining onion to the pot and cook until slightly softened, 5 minutes. Stir in the chopped garlic and chopped thyme and cook 1 minute. Sprinkle in the flour and cook 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the strained marinade and the remaining 1 cup broth and bring to a simmer. Return the meat to the pot, cover and cook in the oven until tender, 2 hours 30 minutes.
Remove the meat and transfer to a plate. Bring the sauce to a simmer over medium heat. Whisk in the gingersnaps and simmer until thickened; season with salt and pepper. Thinly slice the meat; serve with spaetzle, the vegetables and sauce and sour cream, if desired. Top with parsley.