2½ pounds beef chuck
2 garlic cloves
1 large onion
1 bay leaf*
3 sprigs fresh parsley*
1 sprig fresh thyme*
2⅓ cups red Burgundy or Pinot Noir
2 tablespoons olive oil (1½ tablespoons more later)
3 slices bacon
12 pearl onions
1½ tablespoons olive oil.
¼ teaspoon pepper
¼ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons flour
1½ tablespoons parsley flakes
⅓ cup brandy
2 cups beef stock
12 new (young, small) potatoes
1½ tablespoons (optional garnish)
* = bouquet garni
Makes 8 bowls. Takes 8 hours.
Cut beef into 1½” cubes. Mince garlic cloves. Dice onion and shallot. Crush peppercorns with kitchen mallet. Tie parsley sprigs and thyme with kitchen string. Insert bay leaf and peppercorns into bundle of parsley and thyme. This bundle is called bouquet garni.
Add beef cubes, garlic, onion, shallot, bouquet garni, Burgundy, and 2 tablespoons olive oil to large mixing bowl. Stir with spoon until well blended and beef is completely coated. Cover and let marinate for 3½ hours.
While beef marinates, cut bacon into ½” by 1″ strips. Slice carrots into ½” cubes. Peel pearl onions. Peel potatoes. (This is easier if you boil them for one minute and let cool.) Add bacon and 1½ tablespoons olive oil to Dutch oven. Heat oil using medium-high heat. It will be hot enough when a bacon strip will sizzle when added to Dutch oven. Carefully add bacon strips to oven. Sauté at medium-high heat or until bacon starts to brown. Stir frequently. Remove bacon to plate with a paper towel on it. Keep bacon grease and oil in Dutch oven.
Add pearl onions to Dutch oven. Sauté at low heat for 5 minutes or until they are completely brown. Gently and occasionally stir onions with spoon to ensure even cooking. Remove pearl onions and set aside.
Remove beef cubes from mixing bowl. Keep the remaining marinade. Pat beef cubes dry with paper towel. Discard bouquet garni. Strain marinade through colander. Keep the marinade. Discard the solids left in the colander
Add ¼th of the beef cubes to Dutch oven. Sauté at medium-high heat for 4 minutes or until beef is completely browned. Stir frequently. Sauté the rest of the beef in batches. This gives them enough room for even browning.) Add all sautéed beef cubes to Dutch oven. Add pepper, salt, and flour. Reduce heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes or until flour blends completely with marinade. Stir gently and frequently.
Add brandy to Dutch oven. Simmer on low heat for 5 minutes or until brandy evaporates. Occasionally scrape brown bits from the bottom and ladle them over the beef cubes. Add marinade from mixing bowl and beef stock. Cover. Simmer on low heat for 2 hour or until beef cubes start to become tender.
Add potatoes and enough water to cover them to a separate pot. Bring to boil using high heat. Reduce heat to medium-high and boil for 15 minutes or until potatoes are tender. Drain.
Add reserved pearl onions, carrot, and bacon strips. Cover Dutch oven again. Simmer at low heat for 35 minutes or until beef cubes are tender. Skim off any fat from surface of stew. Bring stew to boil using medium-high heat. Serve immediately with potatoes. This dish is also great the next day.
1) This is a truly tasty dish. It also takes a lot of time. So, if your sweethearts complain about this dish in any way or for any length of time be it only a muttered, “Bah,” zap them with your sonic obliterator. The relationships weren’t meant to be.
2) However, if they say your boeuf bourguignon is the best dish ever or if they say it is even tastier than you are good looking which they thought wasn’t possible, then you have keepers.
3) However, if a sweetheart makes this dish for you and it is good, real good, then you have met an angel on Earth. Propose marriage immediately.
– Paul De Lancey, The Comic Chef
My cookbook, Following Good Food Around the World, with its 180 wonderful recipes, my newest novel, Do Lutheran Hunks Eat Mushrooms, a hilarious apocalyptic thriller, and all my other books, are available on amazon.com.