Beef Bourguignon

Source: Micki Seibel, January 2014

Source: Micki Seibel, January 2014

Beef bourguignon is a very traditional French country stew from Burgundy. The cubes of beef are braised in red wine and cognac to make delightfully tender and flavorful beef. The traditional recipes uses all-purposes flour to thicken the broth, and that has, of course, been omitted here. However, my non-gluten-free francophiles have never seemed to miss it. To simplify the cooking even further, I’ve adapted this to the slow cooker. You can prep and put it in before you leave for work and come home to deliciousness wafting through the house.

Ingredients

  • 5 strips of bacon, chopped
  • 2 lbs beef chuck roast, cut into 1/2″ cubes
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and chopped
  • 6 large carrots, chopped
  • 1/2 lb crimini mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 tbsp herbes de provence
  • 1/2 cup cognac or dry sherry
  • 1 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 cup beef broth
  • kosher salt and pepper, to taste

Instructions

If your slow cooker has a Brown/Sauté setting, step 1-3 can be done in your slow cooker. Otherwise, use a large sauté pan on the stove top, and in step 4 you will transfer everything to your slow cooker.

  1. In a large saute pan, fry the bacon over medium-high heat until it is browned.
  2. Remove the bacon and set aside. Brown the cubes of beef in the fat drippings of the bacon. If your pan is not large enough,  you may have to do the beef in batches.
  3. Remove the beef, and sauté the yellow onion and garlic for 3-5 minutes until the onion is translucent.
  4. Add the bacon, beef, onion, garlic, all of the pan drippings, and the rest of the ingredients to the slow cooker. Cook on low for 6.5 hours.
  5. Add a pinch of salt and fresh ground black pepper and serve.

How to Not Screw It Up

  1. Take the time to brown the beef cubes at the beginning. You really want to get a nice golden brown finish on the exterior of the beef cubes early. The slow cook process will not induce this, and the browned exterior is important to the texture of the final dish.