Friday, July 13, 2012

Boeuf Bourguignon

I was crazy excited when Chris suggested the main course for The Dinner Party to me during our planning.  She suggested a Boeuf Bourguignon and I freaked out because that was the first Daring Cooks Challenge that I participated in! In the challenge, I made the vegetarian version because Bri was coming over for dinner.  For this party, we did the for-real, meaty version.  Chris brought over her giant dutch oven and we got to work.  We started the Boeuf around 3 and it was all ready to be served at 6:30...perfection! The dinner guests, mom/dad, Auntie Diane/Uncle Terry, Brad/Bonnie, Zack, Michael, me and Chris all loved it! Katie and Brian opted for the vegetarian main-course option (coming to you soon).  This dish takes a long time, but the meat is so tender and juicy that it is totally worth it.

Julia Child's Boeuf Bourguignon

6 oz pancetta
extra virgin olive oil
3 lbs lean pot roast, cut into 2-3 inch chunks and dried on paper towels
3 cups of a full bodied young red wine
2 cups beef bouillon
1 tbsp tomato paste
2-3 cloves mashed garlic
1/2 tsp fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
salt and pepper to taste
1 lb fresh mushrooms
1/2 tbsp olive oil
1 1/2 tbsp butter
1/4 tsp salt
18-24 pearl onions
1 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp salt
3 tbsp softened butter
3 tbsp flour

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.
1. Dice the pancetta. Brown the pancetta in the bottom of the dutch oven with a little oil to render out the fat.  Remove the pancetta and either save to add later, or take out completely (we chose to take out completely). Add a little oil to coat the bottom of the pan.  Once smoking, over medium-high heat, brown the beef, a few pieces at a time, so that each side is browned.  Place browned beef on a pan.  Continue until all the beef is browned.  Place all the beef, and juices, into the dutch oven pot.  Pour in the red wine and scrape off all the sides and bottoms of the dutch oven so that you get all the flavorful bits off the pot.  Add enough beef bouillon to cover the beef.  Stir in the tomato paste, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, and salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer, cover the casserole and place in the lower 1/3 of the oven for 2 1/2-3 hours.  Beef should be tender.
2. While the beef is simmering, trim the mushroom stems and wash and dry the mushrooms.  Cut the tops into quarters.  Heat the oil and butter in a skillet until the butter foam begins to subside, add the mushrooms, and toss over high heat for 3-4 minutes.  Mushrooms should be lightly browned.  Remove to a side dish and toss with salt.
3. Drop the onions into boiling water, bring rapidly back to a boil and boil for several seconds to loosen the skins.  Drain.  Peel the onions carefully and cut a 1/4 in cut into the ends to keep them from bursting.  Place in one layer in a saucepan.  Add butter and salt and enough water to come halfway up. Cover and simmer very slowly for 20-30 minutes.  Set aside, save the cooking liquid.
4. Cream the softened butter and flour in a small bowl with a spatula.  When the beef is done, drain the cooking liquid into a saucepan.  You should have about 2 1/2 cups.  If you need more, add a little beef bouillon.  Skim of the fat, bring the liquid to a simmer, and add salt and pepper to taste.  Pour several spoonfuls of the beef-cooking liquid into the butter and flour paste and whisk.  Then, pour this mixture back into the cooking liquid.  Pour in the onion cooking juices and bring to a simmer, stirring, this is now your sauce.  Add the mushrooms and onions to the beef pot and pour on the sauce.  Simmer for 5 minutes.  It's time to serve!!!

Enjoy :)


  1. Beef Bourguignon is one of my favourite meals. YUM!

  2. This is the one meal from the movie "Julie and Julia" that I've always wanted to try. I must admit that Julia Child's recipes scare the bejesus out of me though. What a perfect choice for you dinner party though! Looks yummy and I bet it was a smash hit :D

  3. I have made the authentic Julia Child boeuf bourguignon and I agree that it's a lot of work but totally worth it.