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Julia Child’s Boeuf Bourguignon

Excerpted from Mastering the Art of French Cooking by Julia Child. Copyright © 1961 by Alfred A. Knopf. Reprinted with permission from the publisher Alfred A. Knopf, a division of Random House, Inc.

Ingredients

  • 6 ounce chunk of bacon cut into 1/4 in thick pieces
  • 2-21/2 lbs. lean stewing beef cut into 2-inch cubes
  • 1 carrot sliced
  • 1/2 onion sliced
  • 2 Tb flour
  • 3 cups of red wine
  • 2-3 cups beef stock
  • 1 Tb tomato paste
  • 2 cloves garlic chopped
  • ½ tsp thyme
  • 1 bay leaf

Braised Onions

  • 18-24 small white onions
  • 1/4 cup stock
  • 1/4 cup red wine
  • 2 Tb butter
  • 1 Tb olive oil

Sauteed Mushrooms

  • 1 lb mushrooms quartered
  • 2 Tb butter
  • 1 Tb olive oil
  • Salt and pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. Cut bacon into 1/4 inch thick pieces. Simmer bacon for 10 minutes in water. Drain and pat dry. Meanwhile, pre-heat oven to 450 degrees.
  2. In a large casserole pot, saute bacon in olive oil on moderate hear for about 2-3 minutes to brown lightly. When ready, reserve bacon to a side dish.
  3. Pat dry the cubed beef with paper towels and brown in olive oil in the same pot. Brown on all sides. Only do one layer at a time, so don't overcrowd the pot. Reserve meat to a plate when done.
  4. In the same pot, add the carrots and sliced onions and saute until lightly browned. About 5 minutes.
  5. Return the beef and bacon to casserole pot and add salt and pepper, toss to coat. Sprinkle 2 Tb flour and toss to coat the beef all together. Next, place casserole uncovered in middle rack of oven for 4 minutes. Then toss the meat and return to oven for another 4 minutes. Julia insists that this step browns the meat). Remove casserole from oven and turn down to 350 degrees.
  6. Stir 2-3 cups of red wine (I used Chianti) and enough beef stock to barely cover meat. Add tomato paste, garlic and herbs. Bring to a simmer on the stove top then cover and place back in oven for 2-21/2 hours or until meat is tender to forks touch.
  7. While the beef is cooking, prepare the onions and mushrooms. Set them aside until needed.
  8. For the onions, allow the butter and oil to bubble in a skillet and add the onions. Saute for about 10 minutes on moderate heat so they begin to brown. Add stock, wine and herb bouquet and and slowly cook for 40-50 minutes until onions are tender and liquid has evaporated (for the most part).
  9. For the mushrooms, in a separate skillet saute mushrooms in oil and butter until lightly browned.
  10. When the meat is tender, use a slotted spoon and remove all the meat and vegetables leaving just the liquid in the pot. On the stove-top turn heat on high and reduce sauce. Once reduced add back meat, vegetables and braised onions and mushrooms.
  11. Serve with boiled potatoes and garnish with fresh parsley.