Boeuf Bourguignon (Beef Stew with Red Wine)

Boeuf Bourguignon (Beef Stew with Red Wine)

Ever since watching the movie Julie & Julia a few weeks ago, I have wanted to make Boeuf Bourguignon.  I decided to make Ina Garten’s version of this dish, because it seemed simpler and required much less cooking time than Julia Child’s recipe.  The dish turned out wonderfully, and although it was a little labor (and time) intensive, it was fun to make.  It was the first time I’ve ever flambéed something, which was fun too.  If someone had told me 5 years ago that someday I would be purposely lighting something on fire in my kitchen, I would never have believed it!

Another benefit to this stew is that it made excellent leftovers.  In fact, I think it was better the second night.  Also, since I had more time the second night, I was able to make a couple side dishes to round out the meal.  The beef stew paired perfectly with mashed potatoes (I like mashed Yukon gold potatoes), steamed broccoli, and garlic bread.

Adapted from: Barefoot in Paris cookbook, by Ina Garten (pg. 121-123)

Boeuf Bourguignon

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon good olive oil
  • 6 ounces good bacon, diced
  • 1 ½ pounds chuck beef cut into 1-inch cubes
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound carrots, sliced diagonally into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 yellow onion, sliced
  • 2 teaspoons chopped garlic (2 cloves)
  • ¼ cup Brandy
  • ½  (750 ml.) bottle good dry red wine such as Pinot Noir
  • 1 can (2 cups) beef broth
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves ( ½ teaspoon dried)
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature, divided
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 pound fresh mushrooms stems discarded, caps thickly sliced
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley, optional

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.

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

Dry the beef cubes with paper towels and then sprinkle them with salt and pepper. 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 the plate with the bacon and continue searing until all the beef is browned. Set aside.

Toss the carrots, and onions, ½ tablespoon of salt and 1 teaspoon of pepper in the fat in the pan and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the Brandy, stand back, and ignite with a match to burn off the alcohol. Put 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 ¼ hours or until the meat and vegetables are very tender when pierced with a fork.

Combine 2 tablespoons of butter and the flour with a fork and stir into the stew.  Sauté the mushrooms in 1 tablespoon of butter for 10 minutes 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 to taste.

Sprinkle each serving with parsley, if desired, and serve with garlic bread.

Serves: 4

Cook the bacon.

Sear the beef cubes in the hot oil/bacon fat until browned.

Saute the carrots and onions.

Flambe the brandy.

Wait for the alcohol to burn off.

Saute the mushrooms.

Mashed potatoes are a good side dish.

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