Boeuf à la Bourguignonne

Years ago, before we were even married, I picked up a cookbook on a rack somewhere, a book on sale, and it has become a favorite: ‘Good Cooking With Wine’ by Mary Reynolds. When called upon to make MK’s birthday entrée, I pulled out the recipe that is a family favorite for Boeuf Bourguignon.

This time I made a triple batch, given that one serves four, it is extremely delicious, and that it freezes well. The unfortunate thing is that I doubt that there will be any left over for freezing.

Although we are celebrating the birthday on Sunday afternoon, I made the entrée on Saturday as some things just taste even better when not served right away.

We had picked up the ingredients the day before, going to Mariano’s and even having them take the some five pounds of beef and cutting it up into one inch cubes, something I found as a huge savings of time. Even without having to do the cut up, it took about two hours to get it into the pot so that it could slow cook for several hours. Into the mix went a full bottle of French Burgundy, onions, garlic, beef broth, and beef.

While at Mariano’s, we had them take a steak and grill it for us, we purchased some sides, and we enjoyed a $5 glass of wine at Mariano’s Happy Hour. It was an overall win/win situation. After we finished eating, we went to Heinen’s where I purchased the French Burgundy wine I could not find at Mariano’s along with small onions.

Here is the recipe I use, I play around a little with it, but this is the basic plan of action:

Bœuf à la Bourguignonne

Cooking time: 2 ½ – 3 hours…serves four

2 thick slices salt pork
2/3 cup robust red wine
2 tablespoons drippings or lard
1 ¼ cups beef stock or water with bouillon cube
12 peeled tiny onions
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 ½ lb. chuck steak or other lean beef, in 1 inch cubes 1 garlic clove, crushed
bouquet of bay leaf, thyme, and parsley, tied
3 tablespoons flour
salt and ground black pepper
1 cup button mushrooms, sautéed in butter

This is a typical French beef and wine casserole, and worth making in double quantities as it reheats or freezes excellently. Cut pork into ¼ inch strips. Melt fat in a heatproof casserole and fry pork and button onions slowly, stirring frequently, until golden; remove onions and reserve. Add chopped onion and meat to casserole and fry briskly, stirring frequently, until browned. Sprinkle in the flour, stir and cook for a minute. Stir in the wine, allow to bubble for a minute, then add stock, tomato purée, garlic, herbs and seasoning. When boiling, cover tightly and simmer very gently on top of cooker (if more convenient cook in a slow oven at 300º or slow cooker for at least two hours. Check seasoning, add button onions and mushrooms. Cover and cook for another 30 minutes. Serve from the casserole, with boiled potatoes tossed in butter and sprinkled with parsley. Drink a full bodied red wine with it.

Good Cooking with Wine, Mary Reynolds

About Richard Koerner

Sixty something, father, papi, educator, organizer, Francophile, traveler, amateur photographer, gardener, cyclist, kayaker, calligrapher, cinephile, reader, and overall renaissance type human being.
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