Friday, January 13, 2012

beef bourguignon or boeuf bourguignon

Here in South Carolina we had 2 or 3 very cold days and we all have complain about it. It just made me feel like to make some good confort food , hearty, that can warm you all over. I thought about a good beef bourguignon. It does sound so french and complicated but it is not. Actually beef bourgignon was a family dish that did allowed the housewife to use a second class piece of meat and to cook it long enough to make it tender. So really a beef bourguignon is just a beef stew cooked in red wine at very low temperature. There is a few different way to cook beef bourguignon my recipe is very simple just like my grand mother and mother made it and like most french people make it. I saw a lot of recipe lately where to make it faster the marinade step was omitted. I will not do that i think the marinade help to tenderize the meat and improve the taste and really it should not take more time in the cooking  because it can be done the night before but as always it is up to you. here is my recipe and I hope you enjoyed cooking it and eating.
Beef cut in to about 2 inches. About 2 lbs for 4 persons
For the marinade
1 small onion
1 carrots
1 rib celery
2 cloves garlic
1 bottle or red one ( keep 1 glass to drink while you are cooking)
1 large bay leave
 salt pepper
For the stew
extra virgin oil
flour to coat the meat
2 slices of think bacon cut in small lardons.
1/2 onion or a few pearl onions
1 carrot sliced 1/4 inch
1 rib of celery sliced
1 clove garlic
1 large spoon of tomato paste
wine from the marinade
chicken stock to cover the meat(2 or 3 cups)
1/2 lb of small mushrooms. cremini or white
fresh time and a large bay leave
parsley or chives for garnish
put the meat in a bowl
add the wine
the carrot the celery and the onion the bay leave
salt and pepper
refrigerate over night
let the meat set at room temperature for a while
prepare the vegetables;cleaned and chopped carrots onion and celery
preheat the oven to 350F

enrobe the meat with flour
put a small amount of olive oil in a pan and brown  the meat. make sure the meat is well browned do not crowd in the pan and keep your oil hot. keep on the side in a plate.
In the same pan brown the bacon and cook for 5 10 minutes put aside with the meat . In the same pan cook the vegetables for about 10 minutes .
Put the meats and the vegetables( not the mushrooms) back  in the pan.
Add the bay leave and the thyme the salt and pepper cook for a few minutes more.
Add the wine cook a few more minutes and add the chicken broth.
put in the preheated oven and cook for 2 hours.
Check once and a while and add some more stock if needed.
In the last 30 minutes of the cooking time add the mushrooms .
And time to eat !!!

_you may add potatoes to the last 30minutes of the cooking time when you add the mushrooms . I do not because I like to serve the beef bourguignon on mashed potatoes the gravy is very thick and it is delicious.
-some nice french bread or country bread is very good with the stew too.
Serve the same wine you cook with any good red wine will be fine , a Merlot for instance . It will be good too with beer if it is your preference.
Cooking note ; make sure you flour your meat just before to cook it or it will get soggy and won't brown properly.
Happy cooking Happy eating.