Boeuf bourguignon is one of the best French recipes with beef. This flavourful beef recipe combines the meat with red wine and herbs for an exquisite dish. This dish is sometimes called beef burgundy, because the traditional wine used is from France’s Burgundy region. It is a version of Julia Child’s boeuf bourguignon aka beef bourguignon and a great alternative to a traditional beef stew recipe.
You might have made Julia Child’s beef bourguignon before or another version. I love keeping things simple. As long as I have beef, red wine and herbs, I can rustle this up whenever a beef burgundy craving hits!
What is the History of Boeuf Bourguignon?
This delicious beef stew recipe is famous all over the world today, although it goes back to the Middle Ages. Back then it was considered peasant food (just like lobsters and oysters were, funnily enough!)
People in rural areas would make slow cooked meals which were cheap and hearty. They could use cheap cuts of meat because they would slow cook to tender perfection.
Boeuf bourguignon in the Middle Ages took two days to make, and the longer it cooked the stronger the flavour would be. The meat would also get more tender the more time it bubbled away over the fire.
In modern times, this French beef stew recipe is more of a bistro dish. The first printed recipe for it only goes back to the early 20th century.
A large chunk of beef was used then, but today we use chopped beef. That is what you will find in Julia Child’s beef bourguignon recipe anyway, and the way I make it. Julia Child’s beef bourguignon uses lardons, which are little strips of fatty bacon, and I love to add those.
Tips for Making Boeuf Bourguignon
Make sure you choose a good wine to make this beef stew recipe. A red from the Burgundy region of France is the classic choice. You can go for a Pinot Noir or Gamay.
As for the meat in this flavourful beef recipe, chuck works well. Brisket would make a good alternative although it isn’t as traditional.
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What is Bouquet Garni?
You can see this recipe calls for bouquet garni, but what is this exactly and why is it added to beef burgundy?
Bouquet garni is French for ‘garnished bouquet’. It’s a bundle of fresh herbs that you add to a beef stew recipe or similar dish to add flavour. Because the herbs are tied together, you can simply remove it before serving the dish.
Sometimes a bouquet garni is tied with twine. The herbs can also go inside a mesh bag. Bouquet garni bags are available online or from the grocery store, and you can use them for infusing iced tea and other recipes.
What to Serve with Beef Burgundy
Because this is such a rich and hearty dish, it goes well with mashed potatoes. Other serving ideas include French fries or egg noodles. Rustic bread would also be good, and you could use it to mop up all the tasty boeuf bourguignon juices.
This flavourful beef recipe has carrots and mushrooms in it, so you don’t need to serve another vegetable side dish.
If you want to, then green beans would be good alongside. The wine you used in this beef burgundy recipe would also be nice served with the finished dish.
This beef burgundy makes such a good dinner. It’s hearty and filling for the winter, but you can make it whenever you want!
If you’re a fan of beef stews, then you will definitely love this incredibly flavourful beef recipe. The kitchen smells amazing while it cooks and very soon the whole house will!
Beef bourguignon has come a long way since the Middle Ages, but it’s definitely one of the best beef recipes there is. Prepare it ahead because it will need a few hours to simmer.
How Do You Store Beef Bourguignon?
This beef stew keeps well in the refrigerator for up to four days. I don’t know if I’m imagining it but every time I reheat some it tastes even better! Now I see why those French cooks in the Middle Ages used to keep it simmering for days over the fire.
It also freezes nicely. Just let it thaw overnight and warm it back up the next day. You might even like to make a double batch and freeze half of it. Just use a bigger pot to make it if you’re doubling up.
Boeuf Bourguignon Recipe
The exact cooking time depends on the cut of beef you’re using. As soon as you can cut the beef with a fork it’s done.
Boeuf Bourguignon – Beef Stewed with Mushrooms, Red Wine and Bacon
- 1 Tbsp. butter
- 1.5 lbs. beef stew meat cut into 1-2 inch chunks
- 2 Tbsp. all purpose flour
- 5 Cup red wine
- 1 Tsp. salt
- 4 Sprigs thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- 8 Sprigs parsley
- 1 Sprig rosemary
- 8 Oz. bacon rind removed and cut into stripes
- 10 shallots peeled
- 1 garlic clove minced
- 1 Cup carrots sliced and peeled
- 8 Oz. mushrooms sliced
- Pat dry the beef.
- Heat up the butter in a pot over medium high heat and sear the beef in batches until brown.
- Add the flour, stir and cook for 1-2 minutes, continuously stirring. Be careful not to burn the flour.
- Deglaze with a good pull of the red wine, stir and let reduce for 1 to 2 minutes while stirring.
- Add another pull of wine, stir again and let it reduce. Repeat until flour is dissolved, and you have a creamy sauce.
- Pour in the remaining red wine, add the herbs and the salt and cook covered on low-medium heat for about 2 hours or until meat is fork tender (note 4).
- Meanwhile, heat up a pan over medium high heat and cook the bacon and shallots until browned and slightly crisp.
- Add the garlic, mushrooms and the carrots and braise everything covered for 20 minutes.
- When the beef is cooked add the bacon-vegetable mix to the pot.
- Add salt and pepper to taste (note 5)
- Serve hot with fresh parsley. I love it with mashed potatoes, but you can also eat it with boiled potatoes, pasta or bread.
Note 4: Cooking time varies on the quality of the meat Note 5: Wait until the last step to season with salt, because the bacon mix will add a lot of flavour to the stew
The nutrition information provided are only estimates based on an online nutritional calculator. I am not a certified nutritionist. Please consult a professional nutritionist or doctor for accurate information and any dietary restrictions and concerns you may have.
Let me know if you try out this version of Julia Child’s boeuf bourguignon aka beef bourguignon aka beef burgundy recipe. It is a flavourful beef recipe is a great alternative to a traditional beef stew recipe. If you are looking for other beef recipes, you might also like this Easy Beef and Potato Bake – One Pot Meal.