Thursday, November 13, 2014

Ina Garten’s Beef Bourguignon

When the weather turns chilly you can never go wrong with comfort food. Beef Bourguignon happens to be one of our favorite comforting dishes. I’ve had vertigo and haven’t been able to do much, so I hope you don’t mind a repeat of this Ina Garten favorite, first seen here. In south Florida our normally sunny skies and pleasant temperatures changed over the weekend as the cold front brought us a damp and chilly Sunday. Of course that was nothing compared to the cold blast of Arctic air that is affecting many of you.

I hope you’ll come in from the cold and enjoy a bowl of rich French deliciousness. Beef bourguignon can be made in advance and actually it taste even better the next day.

Ina’s Beef Bourguignon
Adapted from The Barefoot Contessa via The Food Channel – serves 6
Printable Recipe

1 tablespoon olive oil
¼ pound apple wood smoked bacon, diced - *see cook's notes
2 1/2 pounds bottom round or chuck beef, trimmed of excess fat & cut into 1-inch cubes (we prefer bottom round)
Kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
1 pound carrots, peeled, then sliced diagonally into 1-inch chunks
2 yellow onions, peeled and sliced
2 teaspoons chopped garlic (2 cloves)
1/4 cup Cognac or brandy
1 (750 ml.) bottle good dry red wine such as Cote du Rhone or Pinot Noir
2 cups fat free, low sodium beef broth
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves or 1/2 teaspoon dried
4 tablespoons unsalted butter at room temperature, divided
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 pound frozen whole onions (or fresh small onions, parboiled & browned)
1 pound fresh mushrooms, stems discarded, caps thickly sliced
1/2 cup chopped fresh flat leaf parsley for garnish

Serve with:
Country bread or sourdough, toasted or grilled and rubbed with garlic clove, or if you prefer, buttered noodles or creamy mashed potatoes

Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F. Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven. Add the bacon and cook over medium heat for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the bacon is lightly browned. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon to a large plate lined with paper towels.

Dry the beef cubes well with paper towels, then sprinkle them with salt and pepper. In batches in single layers, sear the beef in the hot oil for 3 to 5 minutes, turning to brown on all sides. Remove the seared cubes to the plate with the bacon and continue searing until all the beef is browned. Set aside. Toss the carrots and the sliced onions in the fat in the pan, season with salt and freshly ground black pepper, and cook for 10 to 15 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onions are lightly browned. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute more. Remove the pan from the heat and add the ¼ cup of cognac. Stand back and ignite with a match to burn off the alcohol. (You can add up to ½ cup of cognac if you wish).

Put the meat and bacon back into the pot with the juices. Add the bottle of red wine plus, enough beef broth to almost cover the meat. Add the tomato paste and thyme. Bring to a simmer, cover the pot with a tight-fitting lid and place it in the oven for about 1 1/4 hours or until the meat and vegetables are very tender when pierced with a fork.

Time out for a cook’s note: If you wish to prepare this dish in advance, at this point when it cools you can cover it and keep it covered for several days in the refrigerator. We like to skim off the excess fat from the top with a spoon when it’s removed from the refrigerator and still cold. Braises served the next day are always better for maximum flavor.

Combine 2 tablespoons of butter and the flour with a fork and stir into the stew. Add the small frozen pearl onions or if using fresh onions, parboil for 30 seconds in lightly salted water, then drain and slip off the skins. Brown the onions in a little butter & olive oil until they take on a bit of color before adding them to the stew. Sauté the mushrooms in 2 tablespoons of butter for 10 minutes until lightly browned and then add to the stew. Bring the stew to a boil on top of the stove, then lower the heat and simmer for 15 minutes. Season to taste.

To serve, toast the bread in the toaster or oven. Rub each slice on one side with a cut clove of garlic. For each serving, spoon some stew over a slice of the bread and sprinkle with some chopped fresh parsley. Buttered noodles or creamy mashed potatoes make a delicious base for the bourguignon as well.

Cook’s Notes: The French would not use overly smoked bacon in their Bourguignon. Therefore I suggest that you use a lightly apple wood smoked bacon and stay away from the heavily smoked bacons such as Nueske’s and Benton’s. Both brands are excellent smoked bacons, but save them for a BLT or breakfast. You don’t want your Bourguignon to taste too smoky.

I will be sharing this with Foodie Friday at Rattlebridge Farms, Miz Helen’s Country Kitchen Full Plate Thursday, and Weekend Bites at Simple Living.  

Have a great weekend everyone. 


  1. "Made in Advance" is culinary music to my ears! I've served this on many occasions and it never fails to please. Hope you are feeling better soon.


  2. Comforting and tasty! A great cold weather dish.



  3. That sure does look like a nice hearty meal Sam! I hope you're felling better soon:@)

  4. So sorry to had about your dizziness Sam. Hopefully it is soothing that clears quickly when you have found the route of the problem. I am willing to come in from the cold for some beef bourguihnon. I just love Ina's recipes.

  5. This could be the perfect antidote to feeling bad. Hope you are better soon Sam.

  6. I hope you are better soon too husband had it a number of years ago..and a Florida friend too..all is well went away.Take care take care.
    Your dish..Ina's..and yours:) Perfect!

  7. I love this dish. Hope you feel better soon.


  8. I've had this dish on my radar for some time now, but have yet to make it. Your delicious looking shots has me inspired and I know Ina's version will be good.

  9. Hope you feel better soon Sam. I love beef bourguignon.

  10. Sam, I'd really like this cold weather comfort entree...without the mushrooms. On the other hand, Laurie would eat my share with gusto! Stay warm! Take Care, Big Daddy Dave

  11. Sorry about the vertigo, I had that some months back and ended up having treatment and exercises to do after, it is horrible so I feel for you.
    Love Beef Bourguignon but I always leave it to my husband, he has a knack of producing the best ever :-) Take care Diane

  12. Hope you're soon feeling better, Sam.
    I pinned this gem of an Ina dish on our First Friday Board; it never hurts to repeat some older posts that we particularly love. And....this always tastes better the second day!

  13. That stew certainly looks like the exact food to cook for this winter blast going by us. For the next few days we will only be in the low to mid 40s and going as low as 20 F at night! It is more like January than mid-November. Since most of my fig tree died with that last winter cold I am planning to make some other jam – I was thinking about making cranberry, raspberry, orange and ginger jam, that I’ll call CROG jam, like the FROG jam that my daughter gave me – fig, raspberry, orange and ginger – I wonder how it will taste, but it might be good for Thanksgiving with leftover turkey, what do you think? But next week when it deeps to the 20s at night I’ll make you beef bourguignon.

  14. Oh this sounds and looks delicious! Thank your for the recipe - and you are so very right, autumn and winter are the seasons for dark meat!
    All my best from Austria and a happy time

  15. I love beef bourguignon! I typically make Julia Child's recipe, but this one looks easier, so I may have to give it a go!

  16. You cannot go wrong with a good Ina Garten recipe.

    I hope you are feeling better. Vertigo is nasty.

  17. Hi Sam, this looks divine, love Ina's recipes!

  18. I wish I could cook as good as you, Sam. I love beef bourguignon, but don't even know which part of beef I should get to prepare this. Yours looks so tasty and choked full of flavours. Thanks for sharing and I wish you a lovely day!

  19. This would be the perfect dinner for the winter like weather we've been having, Sam! I love all of Ina's recipes. I really feel like she is the Julia Child of the modern generation

  20. wonderful a classic and thanks for the lovely comment means a lot

  21. Woo hoo, Sam! It looks delicious, I love it and love Ina so this is a win, win. Haven't made this in a couple of years and it's bookmarked for future use. Thanks for the recipe, perfect for a snowy evening like this! Have a great rest of the weekend!

  22. Dear Sam, I hope are feeling much better real soon.
    This certainly is a lovely dish and it is comfort food at its best. Blessings dear and feel better. Catherine xo

  23. I've made this dish once and I can't remember whose recipe I used... Ina's or Julia's. Guess I'll have to make it again.

  24. I used to work in a French restaurant and loved this dish there. This version sounds wonderful (and do you believe I have never made it myself!)

  25. Tis the season for hearty stews -- and this is one of the best.

    I hope you feel better soon, Sam!

  26. That looks like a perfect meal for a day like today. We enjoyed 55 degrees here last Monday but this week is a whole different story! We have our first snow last night to add insult to injury :(

    I'm ready for a delicious comfort meal just like this!

  27. I thought I had done everyone's beef bourguignon but no - haven't done Ina's. We are back in a ridiculously early polar vortex blast - so I will be making this. Soon. Like on Tuesday. The photos really entice!

  28. with this nasty cold weather this sounds just perfect to me right now. I love how rich and meaty. It looks delicious

  29. Thanks for bringing this by Weekend Bites. I hope you are feeling better this week. I absolutely love this dish will give your recipe a try always looking for a little different take.

  30. Your plate of beef bourguignon looks so tasty and truly is appropriate for this time of the year…very comforting on a cold night. Sorry to hear that you have vertigo, I had a friend that used to suffer with it. Hope you are better soon.

  31. Absolute perfect comfort food! Yes, this weather lately has had me wearing sweaters indoors and wool socks. But this beef bourguignon would certainly warm you up from the inside out.


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