It is no secret that I love cooking, baking, and all things entertaining. My colleagues at the hospital seem to appreciate this passion of mine, especially whenever I bring homemade treats to share. I decided to invite one of my friends from the department of Ophthalmology and his family over to my house for dinner. I was a bit nervous planning the menu since I was aware that they travel often and they know how to appreciate a good wine pairing!
During dinner, our conversation twisted and turned and eventually they asked me if I had watched the movie “Julie & Julia” with Meryl Streep and Amy Adams. In the movie, Meryl Streep portrays Julia Child and Amy Adams portrays a popular blogger living in New York. Of course I loved the movie when I saw it, and I could relate to Amy’s character Julie Powell.
The movie portrayed Julie Powell aspiring to cook all the recipes in Julia Child’s book, “Mastering the Art of French Cooking.” The highlight for me was around the scenes when she was nervously attempting Child’s famous recipe for boeuf bourguignon. Naturally, I was hooked and I challenged myself to do the same recipe.
Here I present my rendition of Julia Child’s boeuf à la Bourguignonne! There’s nothing like a hearty meal, or as Child would say: “The only time to eat diet food is while you’re watching for the steak to cook.”
6 oz fatty bacon strips, coarsely chopped
2 lbs lean braising steak, such as top rump roast or braising steak
2 tbsp all-purpose flour
3 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp unsalted butter
12 small shallots
2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 1/3 cups cremini mushrooms, sliced
2 cups robust red wine
2/3 cup beef stock
1 bay leaf
2 sprigs thyme
2 sprigs fresh parsley
2 sprigs rosemary
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
Preheat the oven to 325oF with an oven rack on the bottom. Heat a large oven-proof pot or casserole over medium heat, then add the bacon and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp and golden brown. Use a slotted spoon to remove the bacon and set aside on paper towels.
Cut the beef into 1-inch cubes. Season the flour with salt and pepper and use to coat the beef cubes lightly.
Heat the vegetable oil in the same pot or casserole over medium-high heat and brown the beef in batches. Set aside with the bacon.
Add the butter to the fat remaining in the pot or casserole. Cook the shallots and garlic until just starting to color, then add the mushrooms and cook for about 5 minutes or until the mushrooms just start to soften.
Replace the bacon and the beef, and stir in the red wine and beef stock. Add the thyme, parsley, and rosemary. Cover and cook in the oven for 1 1/2 to 2 hours, or until the meat is tender, stirring once or twice.
Season to taste and serve with roasted vegetables and creamy mashed potatoes.