Sunday, September 06, 2009

Classic French Cooking from a Classic Chef

Slowly Simmering Beef

Beef Bourguignon with Buttered Egg Noodles

Lately there has been allot of interest in the life and cooking of Julia Child who brought classic French cooking home to many people. My youngest daughter was recently given Julia Child's ground breaking book, Mastering the art of French Cooking. With her new cookbook open and a old Julia Child show on TV, she watched and wanted to recreate the classic Beef Bourguiqnon that was featured on the show. We were soon off to the store with a short shopping list to buy what was needed. With the cookbook open we quickly prepped and cooked the famous dish. After a afternoon of simmering in a heavy copper pot till tender, it was done. The stew was served with wide egg noodles and chopped parsley. My daughter loved making and eating it, she was very proud of her work. and vowed to cook more from the book.

1 pound Beef stew meat, large dice, seasoned and dried on paper towels
3 Carrot, Diced
3 Cloves Garlic, Chopped
1 Sprig Thyme, Chopped
3 Strips Smoked or Unsmoked Bacon
2 Cups Beef Stock, homemade or low salt canned
1 Cup Water
1/2 Bottle of any big Rhone style red wine
1 Tablespoon Tomato Paste
Kosher Salt/Pepper
8 Pearl Onions, Peeled
8 Button Mushrooms, Quartered
1 bunch Parsley, Chopped

1. Slowly cook the bacon in a heavy oven proof pot, remove when browned.

2. Brown the beef in the bacon fat, very important to get well browned.

3. Add the garlic, carrot, thyme and continue to cook for a few minutes.

4. Deglaze with red wine, add water, tomato paste, cover and place in 300F oven for 90 min.

5. In a separate pan, brown the pearl onions in butter, add mushrooms and cook for another few minutes till just cooked through, season with salt/pepper.

6. Add the onion/mushrooms to the braise, check for seasoning and add a touch of cornstarch to thicken, add the chopped parsley to finish.

Serve with Buttered Egg Noodles tossed with a pinch of parsley and be sure to pour yourself a glass of the remaining red wine to toast your success in mastering a French classic.

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