Boeuf Bourguignon, Boeuf a la Bourguignonne (Beef Stew in Red Wine, with Bacon, Onions and Mushrooms)

I LOVE, love, love, love Sunday Dinners…right now I love cooking all day on Sunday while My hubby watches Football and invites friends over. I hate football. But I like hearing the guys cheering, and getting mad at the game. I also love the compliments I get on the foods I make. My favorite person to cook for is Normy’s friend James. He tells me I am the best cook. He never turns anything away and he’s honest if he doesn’t like something, and he’s willing to try anything. My kind of person to cook for, plus he’s neat. I like neat people in my apt, must be my OCD.

I got this recipe from my Cookbook Mastering the Art of French Cooking By Julia Child. There was a lot that went into this recipe it took me several hours to make, but it was the BEST meal I have made so far. There are basically three Recipes that go into this recipe. I knew it was time-consuming but then I didn’t realize I had to do 2 other recipes for the onions and mushrooms that go into this dish. I usually don’t follow a recipe 100%, this one I did, I did add a couple extra Jamie touches to make it mine. But I have never made french food, so I decided to stick as close to the recipe as I could…To be honest I was nervous and intimidated making this dish. I doubted myself for a second and then when it was all said and done I was like I ROCK! Hands down the best Beef Stew you will ever make…

Carefully done, and perfectly flavored, it is certainly one of the most delicious beef dishes concocted by man.~ Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Julia Child

In the Book Julia Suggests Boiled Potatoes, or buttered Noodles, or rice to go with this dish. I chose Egg Noodles to put it over. Went well together.

(Reading these Recipes are confusing to me, not like your typical recipe) (I am typing this as it is in the book)

A 6-ounce chunk of bacon – Remove rind, and cut bacon into lardons (sticks, 1/4 inch thick and 1 1/2 inches Long). Simmer rind and bacon for 10 minutes in 1 1/2 quarts of water. Drain and Dry. (I Just took 6 oz of bacon and saute it in 1 Tablespoon of Olive oil)

Preheat oven to 450 Degrees

A 9- to 10-inch fireproof casserole 3 inches deep, (I just used a big oven safe, skillet) 1 tablespoon olive oil or cooking oil, A slotted spoon – Saute the bacon in the oil over moderate heat for 2 to 3 minutes to brown lightly. Remove to a side dish with a slotted spoon. Set casserole aside. Reheat until fat is almost smoking before you saute the beef.

3 pounds lean stewing beef cut into 2-inch cubes (I used Beef Chuck) – Dry the beef in paper towels; it will not brown if it is damp. Saute it, a few pieces at a time, in the hot oil and bacon fat until nicely browned on all sides. Add it to the bacon.

1 sliced carrot, 1 sliced onion – In the same fat, brown the sliced vegetables. Pour out the sautéing fat.

 1 tsp salt, 1/4 tsp pepper, 2 Tablespoons flour – Return the beef and bacon to the casserole and toss with the salt and pepper. Then sprinkle on the flour and toss again to coat the beef lightly with the flour. Set casserole uncovered in middle position of preheated oven for 4 minutes. Toss the meat and return to oven for 4 minutes more. (This browns the flour and covers the meat with a light crust.) Remove casserole, and turn oven down to 325 degrees.

3 cups of a full-bodied, young red wine such as a Chianti, 2 to 3 Cups brown beef stock or canned  beef bouillon, 1 Tablespoon tomato paste, 2 cloves mashed garlic, 1/2 tsp thyme, a crumbled bay leaf, The blanched bacon rind.- Stir in the wine, and enough stock or bouillon so that the meat us barely covered. Add the tomato paste, garlic, herbs, and bacon rind. Bring to simmer on top of stove. Then cover the casserole and set in lower third of the preheated oven. Regulate heat so liquid simmers very slowly for 2 1/2 to 3 hours. The meat is done when a fork pierces it easily. (for this I added 3 cups of beef stock and I added 3 bouillon cubes, and I used a small can of the tomato paste, and instead of crumbling the bay leaf I put 2 whole ones in, and took out after it was done cooking, I also added a can of crushed tomatoes)

(This part was my favorite part as I got to add 3 cups of WINE! Nothing sounds better than beef cooking in wine!)

Almost used a whole Bottle of wine – There was just enough for the Cook to have a taste:

While the beef is cooking, prepare the onions and mushrooms. Set them aside until needed. This recipe is on Page 483 –

OIGNONS GLACES A BRUN [Brown-braised Onions]

For 18 to 24 peeled white onions about 1 inch in diameter: 1 1/2 butter, 1 1/2 Tablespoons butter, 1 1/2 Tablespoon oil, A 9- to 10-inch enameled skillet.- When the butter and oil are bubbling in the skillet, add the onions and saute over moderate heat for about 10 minutes, rolling the onions about so they will brown as evenly as possible. Be careful not to break their skins. You cannot expect to brown them uniformly.

1/2 cup of brown stock, canned beef bouillon, dry white wine, red wine, or water, Salt and pepper to taste, a medium herb bouquet: 4 parsley springs, 1/2 bay leaf, and 1/4 tsp thyme tied in cheesecloth. -then either Braise them: Pour in the liquid, season to taste, and add the herb bouquet. Cover and simmer slowly for 40 to 50 minutes until the onions are perfectly tender but retain their shape, and the liquid has evaporated. remove herb bouquet…

Or bake them:

Transfer the onions and their sauteing fat to a shallow baking dish or casserole just large enough to hold them in one layer. Set uncovered in upper third of a preheated 350-degree oven for 40 to 50 minutes, turning them over once or twice. They should be very tender, retain their shape, and be a nice golden brown, Remove Herb bouquet. Serve…(The onions maybe cooked hours in advance, and reheated before serving).

CHAMPIGNONS SAUTES AU BEURRE  [sautéed Mushrooms] Page 513

a 10-inch enameled skillet, 2 Tablespoons butter, 2 Tablespoons Oil, 1/2 ib. fresh mushrooms, washed, well dried, left whole if small, sliced or quartered if large- Place the skillet over high heat with the butter and oil. As soon as you see that the butter foam has begun to subside, indicating it is hot enough, add the mushrooms, Toss and shake the pan for 4 to 5 minutes. During their saute the mushrooms will at first absorb the fat. In 2 to 3 minutes the fat will reappear on their surface, and the mushrooms will begin to brown. as  soon as they have browned lightly, remove from heat.

Optional: 1 or 2 Tablespoons minced shallots or green onions, Salt and Pepper. – Toss the shallots or green onions (I used green onions) with the mushrooms. Saute over moderate heat for 2 minutes. (sautéed mushrooms may be cooked in advance, set aside, then reheated when needed. Season to taste before serving.

When the meat is tender, pour the contents of the casserole into a sieve set over a sauce pan. Wash out the casserole and return the beef and bacon to it. Distribute the cooked onions and mushrooms over the meat.

Skim fat off the sauce. Simmer sauce for a minute or two, skimming off additional fat as it rises. You should have about 2 1/2 cups of sauce thick enough to coat a spoon lightly. If too thin, boil it down rapidly. If too thick, mix in a few tablespoons of stock or canned bouillon. Taste carefully for seasoning. Pour the sauce over the meat and vegatables.