Video Recipe: Easy Boeuf Bourguignon with Wild Mushrooms

March 5, 2013

This Boeuf Bourguignon recipe - a classic French beef stew slow-cooked in red wine with mushrooms, bacon and onions - may take a long time to cook, but it's actually quite straightforward and simple to prepare. It's a dish definitely well worth the wait. Watch the video to see just how easy it is to make and get the recipe below.

The dish I’m going to prepare is a classic beef bourguignon which is basically a beef stew cooked in red wine with mushrooms, bacon and onions.  It’s that simple.  The joint I’m using is a whole brisket which I’ll chop into large chunks, that’s my preference.  You can buy small cubes from your butcher from the supermarket.  As you can see, there big nuts of fat, I’m quite happy leaving those in because when they’re cooked and cooked properly, fat is delicious.  Me personally, I like large pieces because when you think, that may seem like a very larges piece but once it’s braised down you’d be surprised how much it shrinks.  And as you can see, look at the fat coating, there’s a mass of fat but when you’re going to braise something, you want that fat because cooked slowly for three and a half to four hours, it’s delicious so try and braise with cuts with high content of fat.  So a little oil, then take your onion and because we’re going to be braising these chunks for three to four hours, it doesn’t have to be the finest chopped onion in the world, it’ll just break down.  Get your pan incredibly hot because when you’re going to put big chunks of meat into the pan, the amount of heat which will be taken out of the pan is enormous.  If it’s not hot enough, the meat will release its water and you’ll just end up boiling your meat, it’s a pointless exercise.  As you can see, I’ve retained the heat in the pan.

By caramelizing, firstly you get a fabulous flavor through the caramelization, secondly, you’re braising it beautifully.  Otherwise if you don’t get the color, the desired effect, you just might as well have boiled beef.  What you’ve got to think, how much flavor have we created by caramelizing the meat?  So it’s really important to get a really good golden brown caramelization.  The difference of your stew when finished is enormous.  As you can see the beef is nicely caramelized, out of the pan, into the colander to drain the juices.  Now we take the onions.  In the same fat that we caramelized the beef in, we’re roasting the onions in.  As you can see, by slowly roasting them we remove the water content of the onion.  By removing the water content, we then remove the acidity which then allows the natural flavor and sweetness of the onion to come through.  One and a half onions chopped quite rough.  What these will do is add a lot of flavor to the bourguignon but at the same time, they’ll break down in the braising and they’ll thicken it a little bit so there’s no need to use a lot of flour (continue watching video for remaining instructions).

Boeuf Bourguignon with Wild Mushrooms

1 3/4 pounds beef brisket
2 tbsp sunflower oil
1 onion
1 tsp plain flour
½ leek (the white part)
½ bulb of garlic
1 rasher unsmoked bacon
1/2 cup port (optional)
¼ stick of celery
A few sprigs of thyme
A few sprigs of flat leaf parsley
1 bay leaf
½ bottle full-bodied red wine e.g. Bordeaux
1 Knorr Rich Beef Stock Pot

Click here for the full instructions.