Sunday, August 15, 2010

Julia Child's Boeuf Bourguignon (and my garlic mashed potatoes)

This was my first time making this, and wow, it takes hours, but it's soooo worth the effort and time. The aroma when it's cooking is unbelievable. And really, it's not hard work, or complicated -- just a long process (especially the first time through). I made enough to freeze the extras for the chilly autumn evenings that will be with us far too soon for my liking. Here's a copy of the recipe. I used my favourite GF flour (Doves Farm) for browning/coating the beef, but otherwise, this dish is naturally GF (of course, check that ingredients like your purchased stock are GF).

I made garlic mashed potatoes to go alongside the 'beef stew', which are very simple. Whilst your spuds are boiling (peeled, cut into chunks), saute 2-3 cloves of garlic (for every large potato) in a tbsp of butter and 1/2 tbsp of olive oil. When the potatoes are done, drain quickly, return to the pot and add either a small amount of cream, milk, or even beef or chicken stock, and the garlic mixture. Toss in a pinch of salt and and a few grinds of pepper, and when hot, whip with electric mixer until smooth.

Short version:

Saute a 6 oz. packet of bacon on low heat. Remove bacon, save fat. Brown 2-3 pounds stew beef in fat, remove beef. Cook 2 sliced raw carrots in fat, along with a large chopped onion. Remove from fat. Add beef, bacon, and vegetables to pot, with 1/2 tsp pepper, 2.5 cups red wine, 2 cps beef stock, fresh thyme (1 tbsp), 2 cloves crushed garlic, and a couple of bay leaves. Simmer on stove for 3-4 hours.

While that simmers, get out a small pot and saute 15-20 peeled shallots and 1 lb mushrooms in butter (or olive oil-sunflower spread), for about 30 minutes. Set aside while beef continues to cook.

When beef is done, sieve the beef and sauce, holding beef in colander and returning liquid to pot, reducing it to about 2 cups. When reduced, add the beef mixture, and the mushrooms and shallots. Simmer 15 minutes, then serve with potatoes.

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