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Garrett Oliver - Boeuf Bourguignon lyrics

Ragoûts de Boeuf

Of the several types of beef stew in which the meat is browned, then simmered in an aromatic liquid, boeuf bourguignon is the most famous. The daubes, estouffades, and terrines usually require no browning, and are much simpler to do. To be technically correct, any recipe describing meat which is browned before it is simmered should be labeled a frica**ee; we shall not always make the distinction here because stew has become the current usage.

Cuts for Stewing

The better the meat, the better the stew. While cheaper and coarser cuts may be used, the following are the most recommended. Count on 1 pound of boneless meat, trimmed of fat, for 2 people; 3 if the rest of the menu is large.

First Choice: Rump Pot Roast — Pointe de Culotte, or Aiguillette de Rumsteck

Other Choices: Chuck Pot Roast — Paleron, or Macreuse à Pot-au-feu
Sirloin Tip — Tranche Gra**e
Top Round — Tende de Tranche
Bottom Round — Gîte à la Noix

Cooking Time

Beef stews take 2 to 3 hours of simmering depending on the quality and tenderness of the meat. If it has been marinated before cooking, it may take less time. Stews may be cooked either in the oven or on top of the stove; the oven is preferable because its heat is more uniform.

[Beef Stew in Red Wine, with Bacon, Onions, and Mushrooms]

As is the case with most famous dishes, there are more ways than one to arrive a good boeuf bourguignon. Carefully done, and perfectly flavored, it is certainly one of the most delicious beef dishes concocted by man, and can well be the main course for a buffet dinner. Fortunately you can prepare it completely ahead, even a day in advance, and it only gains flavor when reheated.

Vegetable and Wine Suggestions

Boiled potatoes are traditionally served with this dish. Buttered noodles or steamed rice may be substituted. If you also wish a green vegetable, buttered peas would be your best choice. Serve with the beef a fairly full-bodied, young red wine, such as Beaujolais, Côtes du Rhône, Bordeaux-St. Émilion, or Burgundy.

For 6 people

A 6-ounce chunk of bacon
A 9- to 10-inch fireproof ca**erole 3 inches deep
1 Tb olive oil or cooking oil
A slotted spoon
3 lbs. lean stewing beef cut into 2-inch cubes (see preceding list of cuts)
1 sliced carrot
1 sliced onion
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1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
2 Tb flour
3 cups of a full-bodied, young red wine such one of those suggested for serving, or a Chianti
2 to 3 cups brown beef stock or canned beef bouillon
1 Tb tomato paste
2 cloves mashed garlic
½ tsp thyme
A crumbled bay leaf
The blanched bacon rind
18 to 24 small white onions, brown-braised in stock
1 lb. quartered fresh mushrooms sautéed in butter
Parsley sprigs

Remove rind, and cut bacon into lardons (sticks, ¼ inch thick and 1½ inches long). Simmer rind and bacon for 10 minutes in 1½ quarts of water. Drain and dry.

Preheat over to 450 degrees.

Sauté the bacon in the oil over moderate heat for 2 to 3 minutes to brown lightly. Remove to a side dish with a slotted spoon. Set ca**erole aside. Reheat until fat is almost smoking before you sauté the beef.

Dry the beef in paper towels; it will not brown if it is damp. Sauté it, a few pieces at a time, in the hot oil and bacon fat until nicely browned on all sides. Add it to the bacon.

In the same fat, brown the sliced vegetables. Pour out the sautéing fat.

Return the beef and bacon to the ca**erole and toss with the salt and pepper. Then sprinkle on the flour and toss again to coat the beef lightly with the flour. Set ca**erole uncovered in the middle position of the preheated oven for 4 minutes. Toss the meat and return to the oven for 4 minutes more. (This browns the flour and covers meat with a light crust.) Remove ca**erole, and turn over down to 325 degrees.

Stir in the wine, and enough stock or bouillon so that the meat is barely covered. Add the tomato paste, garlic, herbs, and bacon rind. Bring to simmer on top of the stove. Then cover the ca**erole and set in lower third of preheated oven. Regulate heat so liquid simmers very slowly for 2½ to 3 hours. The meat is done when a fork pierces it easily.

While the beef is cooking, prepare the onions and mushrooms. Set them aside until needed.

When the meat is tender, pour the contents of the ca**erole into a sieve set over a saucepan. Wash out the ca**erole and return the beef and bacon to it. Distribute the cooked onions and mushrooms over the meat.

Skim fat off the sauce. Simmer sauce for a minute or two, skimming off additional fat as it rises. You should have about 2½ cups of sauce thick enough to coat a spoon lightly. If too thin, boil it down rapidly. If too thick, mix in a few tablespoons of stock or canned bouillon. Taste carefully for seasoning. Pour the sauce over the meat and vegetables.
(*) Recipe may be completed in advance at this point.

For immediate serving: Cover the ca**erole and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, basting the meat and vegetables with the sauce several times. Serve in its ca**erole, or arrange the stew on a platter surrounded with potatoes, noodles, or rice, and decorated with parsley.

For later serving: When cold, cover and refrigerate. About 15 to 20 minutes before serving, bring to the simmer, cover, and simmer very slowly for 10 minutes, occasionally basting the meat and vegetables with the sauce.

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