This morning after going for a 30 minute 'ralk' (run come walk if you will) I headed to the shops to pick up some of the ingredients for some dishes I have on my to do list for my week off. Ever since becoming familiar with Julia Child's fascinating life story, beef Bourguignon has been on my life long to do list. Julia's signature dish always sounded incredibly delicious but perhaps seemed a little complicated. Thankfully I can report that as far as the taste factor goes, this dish has it all! That said in terms of the complexity factor, this dish is surprisingly simple to make, with little or no complicated instructions and a range of very 'mainstream' ingredients which are easily accessible. The slow cooking results in beautifully tender meat infused with delicious flavours which truly are mouth watering.
500g of stewing beef or braising steak (cut into 5cm cubes)
125g smoked back bacon rashers (cut into strips)
6 shallots (peeled)
20g plain flour
350ml good quality red wine (preferably French)
150ml beef stock
1 bouquet garni
2 cloves of garlic, crushed
200g mushrooms (quartered)
3 tbsp sunflower oil
Salt and Pepper
1. Heat the oil in a large casserole dish. Fry off the beef in batches, removing from the pan and
patting in kitchen towel once browned.
2. Next fry off the whole scallions, garlic and bacon, until the bacon is crisp and scallions slightly
softened. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels and set aside.
3. Mix the flour with the juices in the casserole dish, before adding the wine and beef
stock mixture. Bring to the boil. Once boiling return the beef and bacon to the dish, along with
the bouquet garni and place in the oven with the lid on at 160C for 1 hour and 20 minutes.
4. Then add the mushrooms and scallions before returning to the oven for a further hour.
5. To serve remove the bouquet garni and spoon the tender meat onto plates accompanied by
roasted potatoes and sautéed spinach.
- If your a little curious as to what a 'bouqeut garni' (French for garnished bouquet) is or are
wondering how to make one....here's a little information. A 'bouquet garni' is simply a
combination of herbs tied together with a string, used in stews and soups for seasoning, but is
removed before serving. There is no set combination of herbs, but I usually use parsley
rosemary and thyme, wrapped in bay leaves and then tied.
- Beef Bourguignon is traditionally served with crusty bread. That said potatoes are commonly
served with this dish, usually either roasted or mashed. This evening I opted to mini roast
potatoes with a side of sautéed spinach.