Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Boeuf Bourguignon

Julia Child made this dish famous. Revived by the recent movie, “Julie and Julia”, this dish was highlighted and Julia’s un-canny pronunciation of the dish is incredibly memorable. My husband’s birthday was a few days ago and ever since he purchased a Regional French Cookbook with a photo of Boeuf Bourguignon on the cover, he asked me to make this. After looking at many recipes, I created the one below with all of the common ingredients.

Boeuf Bourguignon

Ingredients• 1 tablespoon good olive oil
• 10 ounces center cut bacon
• 2 pounds chuck beef cut into 1-inch cubes
• Salt
• Freshly ground black pepper
• 1 pound baby carrots, cut in half
• 1 large yellow onions, sliced
• 2 teaspoons chopped garlic (2 cloves)
• 3/4 cup Cognac
• 3 ½ Cups dry red wine
• 2 cups beef broth
• 1 six ounce can of tomato paste
• 2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
• 3 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature, divided
• 1 ½ pound fresh mushrooms stems discarded, caps thickly sliced


Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F.

Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Add the bacon and cook over medium heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is lightly browned. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a large plate with paper towels for draining.

Dry the beef cubes with paper towels and then sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Cook in batches in single layers, sear the beef in the hot oil for 3 to 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Remove the seared cubes to a plate and continue searing until all the beef is browned. Set aside.

Toss the carrots, and onions, 2 teaspoons of salt and 2 teaspoons of pepper in the fat in the pan and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, until the onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for 1 additional minute. Add the Cognac, stand back, and cook for one minute to burn off the alcohol. Add the meat and bacon back into the pot with the juices. Add the wine plus enough beef broth to almost cover the meat. Add the tomato paste and thyme. Bring to a simmer, cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and place it in the oven for about 1 1/4 hours or until the meat and vegetables are very tender when pierced with a fork.

Combine 1 tablespoon of flour with 2 teaspoons of water; stir until combined to make a slurry. Add to the stew and stir in. Sauté the mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of butter, over medium heat until lightly browned and then add to the stew. Bring the stew to a boil on top of the stove, then lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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