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Looking for something special to serve for dinner? Want to impress the heck out of your dinner guests? This dish will do it! Beef and bacon slow cooked in red wine with onions and carrots,  topped with sautéed mushrooms. The succulent meat just melts I your mouth and the red wine sauce is rich and delicious. And you can brag to your friends that you made a classic dish made famous by the amazing Julie Child!

I grew up watching Julie Child cooking on TV. She was always so charming and encouraging people to try cooking new things. I also fell in love with the movie Julie & Julia when it came out. This movie really made me want to try cooking some of Julia Child’s recipes. To do this I was going to need her cook books! Here’s where my wonderful husband comes in! A couple of years ago, he bought me the two book set of Mastering the Art of French Cooking. I don’t plan to cook my way through the whole thing, like Julie in the movie, but I did page through and pick several recipes that were must try’s! Of course, her Boeuf Bourguignon was on my list. I’ve actually made this one a few times now!

I do admit that I left out one ingredient. She cooked her bacon in olive oil. I didn’t see the need to add this additional fat. The bacon has plenty fat of it’s own and I didn’t miss the olive oil one bit. I choose to serve this dish over pasta as there was plenty of sauce. It would be nice over rice too. In her cookbook, Julie explains that this dish is traditionally served with boiled potatoes, but buttered noodles or steamed rice can be substituted.

I am also going to simplify the instructions a bit.I’d be here all morning typing if I copied it exactly from the cookbook! But I promise this will still help you get the job done and arrive at the same result.

This recipe could be cooked in a Dutch oven on stove top or for longer time in a slow cooker.

Boeuf Bourguignon

6 oz of bacon, cut into 1 1/2 inch chunks

3 pounds lean stewing beef cut into 2 inch cubes

1 large carrot, sliced

1 onion, sliced

1 tsp salt

1/4 tsp pepper

2 tbsp flour

3 cups full-bodied red wine (I used a Cabernet Sauvignon)

2 to 3 cups beef broth

1 tbsp tomato paste

2 cloves garlic, pressed or diced

1/2 tsp thyme

1 bay leaf

1 pound fresh mushrooms, quartered

1 tbsp butter

Cook bacon over medium high heat in Dutch oven for 2-3 minutes until lightly browned. Remove bacon and transfer to a plate. I drained it over paper towels. Leave your bacon fat in the Dutch oven. Pat beef dry in paper towels. It will not brown properly if it is damp. Sauté the beef in the bacon fat a few pieces at a time until browned on all sides. As it finishes browning, remove beef and transfer to dish with bacon. In the same fat, brown the onions and carrots. Pour out any remaining fat. Return meat to the Dutch oven sprinkle on the salt, pepper, flour, thyme and toss. Pour in wine and then enough beef broth so that the meat is barely covered. Add onions and carrots. Stir in the tomato paste and garlic. Add bay leaf. Cover and simmer over medium-low heat. Regulate heat to maintain a low simmer for 2 – 3 hours. Towards the end of this cooking time sauté the mushrooms in a tbsp butter. Serve beef over noodles or rice and top with mushrooms.

Bon appetit!

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