Beef Bourguignon

Okay confession time. When I was a freshman in college at TLU, I saw the movie Julie and Julia and was completely inspired to learn how to cook. That movie was what kicked off everything for me! I even made a ‘cooking’ blog back then and had one reader LOL!! No it wasn’t my mom, it was one of my good college friends Steven. Steven thank you for believing in me! haha. Anyway, one of the dishes that Julie recreates is Julia Child’s Beef Bourguignon, a fancy name for a beef and wine dish! I was so so so excited to finally try this recipe out for myself.

It was a tad daunting following Julia Child’s recipe from her Mastering the Art of French Cooking vol. 1… it’s a lot of information to take in, and while I was reading it over and prepping for this dish, my one year old was screaming bloody murder while clinging on to my ankles. Luke was at work when I started this dish, it takes a while to cook, so it was the early afternoon and I think I threw my child off putting so much time into making dinner, that early in the day.

If you like to cook, and I mean really like to cook, I’d suggest investing in this cookbook. It’s unlike any other I have read. As you read a recipe, you’ll find yourself referring back and forth between different pages on references of  methods and techniques. Even while you read a recipe, there is often tips that are thrown in, that stick with you. Everything is explained SO well, the step by step directions make you feel like even the toughest of dishes can truly be done AT HOME!

I tried adapting her original recipe into something a tad easier (with just a few tweaks here and there) without messing up the integrity of the original dish’s flavor! Trust me, there is sooooo much delicious flavor in this recipe! When Luke first took a bite, he was like “oh my God” lol, that’s how I know this will be a keeper in our house hold for years to come. I omitted a few techniques, upped a few ingredients for added flavor– oh and I don’t add mushrooms to my food! Luke doesn’t like them!! I hope you enjoy!!

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Recipe’s Ingredients:

- 2 Lbs of stewing meat cut into 2 inch chunks (I used Sirloin) 
- 6 Ounces thick cut bacon 
- 1 -2 TBS Extra Virgin Olive Oil
- 1 Onion
- 3-4 Large Onions 
- 6 Garlic Cloves 
- 1 Bottle of wine (Pinot Noir, Merlot, Chianti) 
- 1 Container of Beef Stock
- 12-20 Pearl Onions
- 2 TBS Fresh Parsley
- 1 TBS Fresh Thyme
- 2 Bay Leaves
- 1 Beef Bouillon Cube
- Salt and Pepper to taste

Instructions:

Set your oven to 325 Degrees. I used a dutch oven, cooking method starts over the stove and finishes in the oven. Coat bottom of dish with EVOO,  and set heat to medium- high, cook your bacon until browned and crispy. Remove Bacon from dish and set on plate with napkin to catch the grease.

Next you will need to pat dry your meat with a paper towel, Julia says that beef does not brown properly if the meat is damp. Cook your beef in the bacon grease, in batches, rotating till each side is browned, then remove the beef and add onto the plate with the bacon. Continue until all the beef is browned. Next, make sure all the beef is out of the dish and toss in the chopped carrots and onion. Cook the vegetables until translucent, 3-5 minutes, then you will throw in chopped garlic for a couple minutes. Let the vegetables cook together until fragrant.

Now, put the beef and bacon back into the pot with the vegetables. Sprinkle in a little bit of flour to coat the meat and help brown everything up a little bit, stirring for 3-5 minutes. Add the pearl onions, (I used a bag of frozen pearls) . I bought a $8 bottle of Pinot Noir from my local HEB… I truly think it’s what made this dish, which just goes to show you do not need an expensive bottle of wine to add depth and flavor to this classic recipe. Wine suggestions often paired for this recipe are a Pinot Noir, Chianti or Merlot. I poured enough wine to come up to about 1/2 to 3/4 the way up to the food in the pot. I then poured enough beef stock to fully cover just about the rest of the food, making sure no peaks of beef were poking through (everything needs to be submerged under liquid).

Finely chop the parsley and thyme then add into the pot, crush the beef bouillon and throw in, then finally salt and pepper to taste. Now it is time to cover the pot with the lid and put into the oven. Cooking time can range anywhere between 3-4 hours, or until the beef is fall apart tender.

Once the beef is tender, take the pot out of the oven and strain all the juice into a separate sauce pan. Boil the juice on high, to thicken stirring often. I threw in a few sprinkles of flour to help with this process. Once the juice is thick enough to stick to the back of your spoon (sauce like consistency), pour the sauce back into the pot of food. Give it a stir to combine well, let stand for a few minutes then serve.

Julia says you can serve over potatoes, rice or noodles. I boiled red potatoes then mashed them with garlic, butter and milk.

I made this two days ago, and we are still enjoying the left overs. I’d say we got a good 6 servings out of, just as Julia said we would.

Thank you for reading!

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