I arrived back to New York at the weekend and so far it has been pretty cold! Despite landing on the official first day of Spring, I think I have managed to catch the last few days of the very cold winter that these guys have had. So when I was out and about at the Farmers Market this week and feeling decidedly cold I knew I had to cook something warming and comforting for supper that evening. And so I decided on the old classic Beef Bourgignon which is one of my absolute favourite dishes. A classic French beef stew and the signature dish of Julia Child, it's packed full of delicious ingredients and is such a tasty one pot wonder for a cold night.
If you have time it is worth marinading the raw beef in the wine and garlic and bouquet garni and leaving for 4 hours or overnight as this makes a big difference to the flavour of the dish. I've added it as an optional step below.
It's also worth making a visit to fantastic Perthshire butchers Lindsay's and boutique wine shop Exel in Perth to source great quality ingredients for this dish.
I know this dish is a little time consuming but it is absolutely worth the effort. It even tastes great the next day as this only allows more time for the flavours to develop.
This dish is great served with a crusty roll so while you're out and about buying your ingredients, head on over to Murray's The Bakers and say hello to Linda who will help you choose some fresh baked rolls for dipping!
1. Optional marinade step: Put the beef, garlic and bouquet garni in a large bowl then cover and leave in the fridge for 4 hours or overnight.
2. Strain the beef from the marinade and keep the marinade to one side. Next you are going to cook the ingredients in batches but this all adds to the flavour of the dish. So start with melting half the butter in a frying pan and frying the pancetta until lightly browned. Remove from the pan with a slotted spoon and transfer to a large casserole pan.
3. Next add the beef to the frying pan and brown it in the fat that is left in the pan. Again remove with a slotted spoon and add to the large casserole pan. Add the remaining butter to the frying pan and now fry the shallots gently until soft and caramelised. Then quickly add in the mushrooms to give them a slight colour. Stir the flour through the onions and mushrooms and add to the casserole pan with the wine marinade.
4. Put the casserole pan over a medium heat and bring to the boil. Then turn the heat down and simmer over a low heat for approximately 2 - 2 and a half hours.
5. Before serving add the chopped parsley and season with salt and pepper.
6. This is delicious served with a fresh baguette and a large glass of red.
I am seriously jealous of Gill's trip out to New York City! I love the hub-bub of the city and the food markets that seem to go on for miles. We chatted about what we'd do over these three weeks and decided that as long as we could buy the ingredients here in Perth we'd go with a little New York influence!
And so this week we're having a French classic, cooked in New York and we're urging you to go out and buy a tasty chunk of Perthshire beef to make it with!
Gill mentions a bouquet garni for the marinade and I have to share this simple and easy way to make one. Take some comprises parsley (use the parsley stalks, which have lots of flavour), a few sprigs of thyme and a bay leaf. Bundle them into a a piece of celery stalk and tie up with string, to keep them together during marinade and to allow easy removal.
Or you can buy them from Provender Brown!
Try it out at home – you won’t be disappointed! Leave your comments here and please do share this with your friends! You can also share your photographs and ideas with us. We'd love to see them. As always, tag them #PerthLoveFest and we'll scatter them around our own social media.
Nicki XBy Nicola Martin
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