This year for Mother’s Day I decided to cook dinner. I made beef bourguignon, a dish that had been on my “must cook” list for over a year. Having recently purchased the Le Creuset Dutch Oven, I thought this would be the perfect opportunity and the perfect dish, to christen it with. It turned out absolutely perfect, delicious, rich and inviting.
What you’ll need
1 tablespoon olive oil
8 ounces apple wood bacon, diced
2 1/2 pounds chuck beef cut into 1-inch cubes
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pound carrots, sliced into chunks
2 yellow onions, sliced
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
1/2 cup Cognac
1 (750 ml.) bottle dry red wine like Pinot Noir
2 cups beef broth
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves or 1/2 teaspoon dried
4 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 pound frozen whole onions
1 pound fresh mushrooms, thickly sliced
What to do:
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Add the bacon and cook over medium heat until it’s lightly browned. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a large plate.
Dry the beef cubes with paper towels and then sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Sear the beef in the hot oil for 3 to 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Remove the seared cubes to the plate with the bacon and continue searing until all the beef is browned. Set aside.
Toss the carrots, and onions, 1 tablespoon of salt and 2 teaspoons of pepper in the fat in the pan and cook until the onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for 1 more minute. Add the Cognac, stand back, and ignite with a match to burn off the alcohol.
Put the meat and bacon back into the pot with the juices. Add the bottle of wine plus enough beef broth to almost cover the meat. Add the tomato paste and thyme. Bring to a simmer, cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and place it in the oven for about 1 1/4 hours or until the meat and vegetables are very tender when pierced with a fork.
Once you’ve removed from the oven, combine 2 tablespoons of butter and the flour with a fork and stir into the stew. Add the frozen onions. Sauté the mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of butter for 10 minutes until lightly browned and then add to the stew. Bring the stew to a boil on top of the stove, then lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Season to taste.
Serve with toasted country bread or homemade mashed potatoes. This dish can be a little intimidating – or at least it was for me, but if you have the time and patience for it, it can truly be a treat. Even better, my mom really loved it and for once she wasn’t the one cooking for hours and doing the dishes! Hope you all had a wonderful Mother’s Day as well!