Sunday, 26 April 2009

Boeuf Bourguignon – Beef in Burgundy

Boeuf Bourguignon – pronounced something like 'buhf boor-gee-nyawn' – is a classic French dish that everyone has heard of, and probably eaten. It is the flash cousin of the country style daube de boeuf, which is what I usually make. A daube only requires beef, red wine, sliced onions and seasonings, whereas the Burgundy style dish is enhanced with whole baby onions, lardons (cubes of bacon) and sliced flat dark mushrooms. I used the Delia recipe for my boeuf bourguignon.

It's not really necessary to be pedantic about sourcing Burgundian wine for this recipe. Most red wines will be fine. Personally, I would prefer larger pieces of meat than shown above, but I purchased it pre-cut, as that was the best buy, so made a compromise. Certainly for a daube I would use 5-10 cm cubes.

I served it with a baby leaf salad and pommes de terre boulangère ie thinly sliced potatoes, sprinkled with chopped onions, arranged in layers and cooked in stock (or half stock, half milk) in a shallow oven dish.

Boeuf Bourguignon needs to slow cook for about 3 hours, but Ken, over on Living the Life in Saint-Aignan, recently posted a recipe using meatballs, which took much less time.

Susan

12 comments:

The Beaver said...

A day (or 2) old boeuf bourguignon tastes much better :-)

Susan said...

Beaver: Quite right. I think that applies to most slow cooked dishes too.

Autolycus said...

Absolutely. Last time I made it, I had almost a full bottle of indifferent red to use up on not a lot of solid ingredients for just me, so I had to reduce and reduce and reduce it. Fantastic - and the reheated leftovers even more so.

Jean said...

When Nick makes this he uses a recipe in a French cookery book where most dishes involve starting the preparation several days before. He always flames it at some stage. Personally I think that's just an excuse for showing off and pyrotechnics. A man thing.

Susan said...

Auty: Good tip. Reducing a mediocre liquid ingredient often works wonders. Balsamic vinegar is one I often treat like this.

Jean: None of my recipes for BB suggest flaming, but I was certainly taught to do this to Coq au vin, which is really the chicken version of BB.

wcs said...

That looks great! And personally, I like the smaller cubes of beef.

Jean: Flaming! What a great idea... I think I'll do that next time! :)

Susan said...

Walt: I was taught to make daubes using larger pieces, and I notice that when I say to French butchers that I want meat for a daube, they cut bigger pieces as a matter of course.

And I see that Jean has a point about setting fire to things...

Ken Broadhurst said...

I like bigger chunks of meat in my bourguignon or daube too, but Walt likes the meat diced smaller, so I've started doing that. And burgundy wine really is optional — any dry, drinkable red wine will do. Some recipes do call for using cognac and flaming the dish at some point in the cooking process.

NickL said...

Looks good Susan, however with all due rspect to Delia who's recipies are always excellent, you really should try marinading your beef, shallots, carrot, garlic in a bottle of full bodied red (any you like) with ome peppercorns, 3 or 4 cloves and the bay leaf for a minimum of 24 hours before you even think about cooking anything. Then dry the beef, brown it and finally flame in brandy, then cook slowly for hours as Delia suggests.

Susan said...

Nick: OK. Will try that the next time I make it.

Sweetpea in France said...

We served 'coq au vin' to French friends and madame was adamant that we had not used the correct wine!!! She was correct!!! So be prepared to use wine from Burgundy if serving to the French palate!

You cannot be too cautious in France!

Susan said...

Sweetpea: I can imagine! Perhaps the trick is not to give the dish a French name when serving to French people?