This is my new and improved rendition of Boeuf Bourguignon. Stewing beef sold in supermarkets is usually pre-cut in 1-inch cubes. Ask for it in one piece so you can cut it into larger pieces or get the butcher to cut it for you. I like to use cremini (brown) mushrooms. The secrets to this incredible are big hunks of meat and large chunks of veg, marinating the beef overnight and the splash of orange at the end. Spoon off any congealed fat on top of chilled stew before reheating. Great served with creamy mashed potatoes.
4 lb (2 kg) boneless chuck or stewing beef
750 mL bottle dry red wine
¼ cup brandy or cognac
2 cloves garlic, peeled
2 sprigs fresh parsley
3 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
1 tbsp olive oil
4 tbsp vegetable oil (divided)
4 tbsp butter (divided)
2 tsp kosher salt (divided)
3 tbsp all-purpose flour
3 carrots, peeled, sliced in big chunks on diagonal
3 onions, peeled, sliced in big chunks
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 lb (500 g) mushrooms, thickly sliced
Finely grated rind and juice of 1 orange
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Cut beef into about 20 large pieces.
In large non-metal bowl, combine beef, red wine, brandy, garlic, parsley, thyme and olive oil. Refrigerate 24 hours, stirring once or twice. Let marinated beef return to room temperature. With tongs, remove beef from marinade. Using paper towel, pat dry. Reserve marinade.
In large heavy saucepan with lid or dutch oven, heat 2 tablespoons vegetable oil with 2 tablespoons butter over medium-high heat. Add half of beef. Cook about 5 minutes, turning occasionally, or until browned on all sides. Transfer to plate with slotted spoon leaving behind as much oil mixture as possible. Repeat with remaining beef. Transfer to plate with first batch of browned beef.
Add 1 tablespoon each vegetable oil and butter to saucepan. Add carrots and onions; cook over medium heat about 2 minutes. Sprinkle on 1 teaspoon of salt. Cook over medium heat about 4 minutes, stirring, until lightly browned. Transfer to plate.
Add browned beef back to saucepan. Sprinkle on 1 teaspoon of salt and all of flour. Cook over medium heat about 3 minutes, stirring, so beef is evenly coated with flour. Add vegetables and reserved marinade to saucepan, stirring and scraping up browned bits from bottom of saucepan. Stir in tomato paste.
Bring to simmer over medium heat. Transfer to preheated 325F oven and cook, covered, about 3 hours or until beef is fork-tender.
Add remaining 1 tablespoon each vegetable oil and butter to large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms; cook about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until lightly browned. Add to beef mixture with orange rind and juice. Add salt and pepper if necessary. You can chill the stew and skim fat off the top.
Makes 6 to 8 servings.