Boeuf Bourguinon, a classic French dish, hearty and warming and a wonderful meal in the Fall and Winter. It’s filling and really simple despite several steps, think of it as layering flavors, this layering yields a stew that is complex with simple ingredients and is perfect for a dinner party because much can be made in advance and put together the day of the party. Tender beef, vegetables, herbs and wine married together in a rich broth is pretty much my idea of heaven. This is adapted from one version of Julia Child’s great recipes for Boeuf Bourguinon, I learned that there are several variations, but chose to use this particular recipe because over the years it has become one of my absolute favourites.
The name sounds fancy but really it’s beef stew and is a combination of beef, carrots, onions, mushrooms and herbs. I used a very good French Burgundy wine because if it’s not good enough to drink, don’t use it in your recipe. Serving the same wine with the meal was a great pairing for this classic dish. Enjoy!
Also, if you are wondering which wine to pair with Suzanne’s Boeuf Bourguignon, just keep reading until the end of the post and you will find my wine pairing recommendations: enjoy!
Boeuf Bourguignon | The Dinner Party Collective
- 1 whole head Garlic
- 2 Tablespoons + 2 Cups Red Wine (I used a French Burgundy)
- 4 thick slices of Bacon (cut into 1 inch pieces)
- 1½kg (3½lbs) Beef (I used Chuck, cut into 1½ inch pieces)
- 2-3 Shallots (chopped)
- 1 large Carrot (chopped)
- 2 Tablespoons Plain (All Purpose) Flour
- 3 Tablespoons Tomato Paste
- 3 sprigs Fresh Thyme
- 3 sprigs Fresh Rosemary
- 3 sprigs Fresh Sage
- 2 bay leaf
- 750mls (3 cups) Beef Broth/Stock
- 16 Pearl Onions (peeled)
- 3 bunches (about 24) Baby Carrots (trimmed and peeled)
- 350g (12 oz) Mushrooms – Shitake are recommended (stemmed and cleaned)
- 8 small sprigs of Flat-leaf Parsley
- A crusty French Baguette or some small steamed potatoes (optional)
The day before the Dinner Party:
Preheat oven to 350°F/180°C/Gas Mark 4. Place garlic on large piece of foil. Pour 2 tablespoons wine over garlic. Wrap foil around garlic to enclose. Roast garlic until soft (about 40 minutes). Allow to cool, then press garlic between fingertips to release from skins. Set the garlic aside for the moment.
Cook bacon in large casserole pot over medium heat until brown, about 10 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain and then set aside in a separate bowl.
Pour all but 2 tablespoons of the bacon drippings from the pot into a small bowl and be sure to retain. Increase the heat to high and working in batches, add the diced beef to the pot and brown (about 7 minutes per batch). Using a slotted spoon, transfer each batch of browned meat to a large bowl.
Reduce the heat to medium-low. Add the chopped shallot and chopped carrot to the pot and sauté for about 5 minutes. Stir in the flour and allow to cook for a minute or so, to cook off the taste of raw flour. Return the beef and any accumulated juices to the pot. Stir in the tomato paste, add the herb sprigs, bay leaves, roasted garlic and the 2 cups of wine and simmer for 15 minutes. Add the beef broth/stock, cover and simmer for 1½ hours, stirring occasionally. Uncover and continue simmering until the meat is tender, stirring occasionally, for a further 1½ hours. Remove from the heat and discard the herb sprigs and bay leaves.
While the stew is on cooking, roast the pearl onions and baby carrots. Pre-heat the oven to 190°C/375°C/Gas Mark 5. Place the pearl onions and baby carrots onto a large baking tray and coat them with a little of the reserved bacon fat. Roast for approximately 30 minutes. While the onions and carrots are roasting saute the mushrooms in some of the reserved bacon fat unitil they are lightly browned and set aside with the carrots and onions.
Allow both the stew and the separate vegetables to cool to room temperature, then cover separately, along with the bacon and refrigerate overnight.
The evening of the Dinner Party:
Remove the stew and vegetables from the fridge and over medium-low heat, bring the stew back to a gentle simmer (thinning with a little more broth, if desired). Stir bacon and ⅔ of the vegetables into the stew. Gently reheat the remaining ⅓ of vegetables in a frypan.
Transfer the Boeuf Bourguignon to a large serving bowl, top with the remaining vegetables and a little parsley to garnish. Serve immediately.
Wine Pairing Recommendations
- I would definitely go Italian here, with any of a Sagrantino di Montefalco, an Aglianico or, if you want to stay off the beaten path, a Valtellina Superiore (also known as the “Mountain Nebbiolo“).
- If you prefer an international variety, a Cabernet Sauvignon will match well, as will a Pinot Noir as suggested by Suzanne, particularly one from the West Coast of the US or New Zealand.
For more information about the Italian Sommelier Association (ISA) wine pairing criteria that I follow in my wine selections, please refer to this post.
The main characteristics of Suzanne’s Boeuf Bourguignon call for a wine with good acidity, intense flavors, robust ABV or tannins, a long finish and full body. If you want, you can “reverse engineer” my recommendation and identify the main characteristics of the Boeuf Bourguignon by using the ISA-based wine pairing chart available here: have fun!
Link here to Appetiser | Autumn/Fall Menu
Link here to Dessert | Autumn/Fall Menu