I feel like as a blogger I am constantly trying new recipes, so it’s sometimes hard to say which recipe are my absolute favorites. I tend to demand a lot of variety in my life, and I just really am not the person who does recipes on repeat or a “weekly rotation.”
Enter Julia Child’s Beef Bourguignon.
An unapologetic favorite. Because I have made this recipe more times than I can count.
And because of this, I’ve adapted it several times over, and what I’m going to write in the recipe section is MY adaptation of Julia’s original. (Because ever though Julia is amazing, there’s some parts of the recipe that I find unnecessarily time consuming).
But what I’ve found is that this recipe hits the sweet spot of fancy yet not too intimidating for a regular occasion.
It’s a little special (hello Pinot Noir!) But it’s also the kind of recipe that really don’t take thaaat much extra special energy (just a little extra time) so you can easily whip it up for a regular weekend winter meal.
And not to mention, it’s, at its most basic…. a stew.
And we all know that stews just get better the day after. (Or 2-3 days after if you’re like me and just can’t do the same meal 2 days in a row).
So if you’re looking for a recipe that beyond tasty and proven time and time again to be a winner, look no further than this one.
Valentine’s day dinner, anyone?
Julia Child’s Beef BourguignonCourse: DinnerCuisine: French, Comfort foodDifficulty: Medium
6 oz bacon, diced
3 lbs beef stew meat
2 large carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
1 large onion, diced
4 garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons flour
3 cups dry red wine – Julia specifies Burgundy (I used and recommend Pinot Noir as this is the primary grape in Burgundy wine).
2 cups beef stock (plus or minus)
1 beef bouillon cube, crushed
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 tsp fresh thyme (plus more for garnish)
2 bay leaves
Salt and pepper, to taste
- For the mushrooms
1 lb small crimini mushrooms, quartered
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tablespoons butter
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Place large dutch oven on stove over medium heat. Add bacon saute until fat renders and bacon is crisp. Remove and set aside.
- Pat beef dry with a paper towel, then add to dutch oven, searing on all sides. (Do this in batches to avoid over-crowding the pan).
- Remove beef, then add carrot, onion, and 4 cloves of minced garlic. Season with salt and pepper. Saute until onions are softened.
- Add beef and bacon back to pot and toss with flour. Saute for a few more minutes to cook the flour.
- Pour in wine, beef stock (just enough to cover the beef), and then stir in tomato paste, bouillon, thyme, and bay leaves. Bring to a simmer.
- Cover and place entire pot into the oven for 3-4 hours, or until beef is very tender. Add mushrooms and garnish with thyme, as desired.
- Serve over mashed potatoes.
- To make the mushrooms
- In a medium skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add garlic and saute until lightly cooked/fragrant.
- Add mushrooms and saute until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
- Add to stew when it comes out of the oven, before serving.
- So what did I change from Julia’s original?
- – Substituted bacon for lardons because the flavor is no different.
- – Julia’s method calls for using the oven instead of stovetop for the beginning part of the recipe, which I think is unncessary and complicated.
- – Her original recipe calls for ” Oignons Glacés à Brun,” or beef broth braised pearl onions. I omit these because I just don’t like pearl onions all that much.
- – I also omit the part of her recipe that involves straining and reducing the gravy. Ain’t no one got time for that.
- – I added garlic to the mushrooms and highly recommend this addition.