So when I started this post I did not intend it to be our 100th post. But how fitting that it’s one of our few are far between fancy dinners. I can’t believe how many hours of prep and thought and work and typing have gone into this little hobby of mine. And it has been worth every penny and second. I love being able to share all this with you! Levi has been an amazing co-blogger and support system, always providing whatever little gadget my latest ambitions require. I’m sure you are not the biggest fan of everything I make, but thanks for eating it all with a smile on your face 🙂
The very first time that Levi and I decided that we were going to make a fancy meal was about 4 years ago. And where else would you go other than Julia Child?!? My parents just so happen to have The Art of Mastering French Cooking sitting on an end table for as long as I can remember.
So we borrowed the recipe and set to it! Unfortunately we didn’t have a pot that would work so we borrowed a cast iron Dutch oven. Well, that was certainly an interesting addition to the recipe and our sauce ended up being almost black, although it was still very tasty.
We decided to tackle this recipe again since I got an Emile Henrie pot for Christmas that had a picture of the dish and a variation of the recipe in a little booklet. Well we just couldn’t help our selves so we had to try again.
I really love the flavors in this dish. It’s basically a slow cooked beef stew made with bold red wine flavors which make it slightly tangy and rich. For my friends who aren’t into cooking with booze then just replace the wine with beef broth. Julia Child recommends serving this dish with mushrooms sautéed in butter and baby onions braised in beef stock. Neither of those options really appealed to us, but if that sounds good to you then go for it! You can serve this dish with mashed potatoes, rice or noodles. You can find our homemade noodle recipe here.
- 6 slices of bacon, cut into 1 inch squares
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 3 lbs stewing beef, cut into 2 inch chunks (I used rump roast)
- 1-2 carrots, sliced
- 1 onion, diced
- 1 tsp salt, 1/2 tsp pepper, and 2 tbsp flour mixed together
- 3 cups of a full bodied red wine. We used Burgandy, but you can also use Chianti or Pinot Noir
- 2-3 cups Beef Stock
- 1 tbsp Tomato Paste
- 2 cloves Garlic, minced
- 1/2 tsp Thyme
- 1 Bay Leaf
- Fresh Parsley for garnish
Use a 9 or 10 inch dutch oven that can be used both on the stove top and in the oven. Over medium heat saute the bacon in oil for about 3 minutes to get it slightly brown. Remove the bacon pieces to a side dish, leave the fat in the pan. Dry the beef with paper towels, this will help ensure that the meat browns. Turn the heat up to medium high.
Take a few pieces of beef at a time and sear them on all sides in the bacon fat, until browned on each side. It’s important for the pan to be hot enough that the sear happens quickly without cooking the meat too much on the inside. Set the beef aside with the bacon.
Preheat oven to 450 degrees. In the same fat saute the vegetables until they are slightly browned. Drain the fat out of the pan. Return the beef and bacon to the pan. Sprinkle on some of the flour, salt and pepper mix. Toss to coat the beef, add some more flour mix, toss again. Continue until all the meat is lightly coated. Set the pan in the oven, uncovered, for about 4 minutes, toss the meat and leave in the oven for 4 more minutes. Remove the pan back to the stove top and turn the oven down to 325 degrees.
Add the wine to the pot, add enough beef stock to barely cover the meat. Stir in the tomato paste, garlic, and herbs. Bring the stew to a simmer stirring occasionally. Cover the pot and return to the oven. Simmer and stir occasionally for 2.5 to 3 hours. Try piercing the meat with a fork, if it’s easily pierced then it’s done.
While the meat is cooking take time to prepare the noodles or potatoes or rice, mushrooms and onions. Once the stew is done remove the meat and vegetables, bring the sauce to a boil and skim the fat off the top. Reduce the sauce until it thickens.
Prepare the dish by adding your starch, then the meat and vegetables and top it off with the sauce. You can garnish it with some fresh parsley or basil.
In the words of Julia Child…”Bon apetit!!!”