Beef Bourguignon

Serves 6

Ingredients

Another classic, this is a slightly simplified version.
For entertaining of any kind, it is great as it can be made the previous day.  I love to eat this with Garlic Layered Potatoes or Nutmeg Masho.

  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 200 g (7 oz) streaky bacon, cut into 1 cm (1⁄2 in) cubes
  • 18 baby onions or shallots, peeled
  • 1.5 kg (31⁄4 lb) stewing beef, cut into 4 cm (11⁄2 in) cubes
  • pepper
  • 40 g (11⁄2 oz) flour
  • 400 ml (14 fl oz) red wine
  • 4 cloves of finely chopped garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 sprig thyme
  • 2 stalks parsley
  • small piece of orange zest
  • 450 ml (3⁄4 pt) beef or chicken stock
  • 18 small button mushrooms, tossed in a hot pan with a small knob of butter (about 25 g (1 oz)), till golden

Method

  1. Step 1
    • Preheat the oven to 160°C/325°F/gas 3.
    • In a casserole or a large saucepan, heat 1 tbsp olive oil and brown the bacon.
    • Remove and set aside, leaving any fat in the saucepan.
    • Add the onions and cook those, stirring on a high heat till golden, then take out and add to the bacon.
  2. Step 2
    • Pop the beef into the hot pan in batches, and cook till brown.
    • Season with pepper.
    • Put all the beef back into the pan and scatter in the flour, stirring the meat all the time.
    • Pour in the wine and garlic.


    Step 3

    • Stir again and add the bay, thyme, parsley and orange zest (I sometimes tie these up with string so that I can pull them out easily later).
    • Add the bacon and onions again, and enough stock to come about three-quarters of the way up the ingredients in the pot.
    • Bring up to the boil, put the lid on, and place in a preheated oven for 21⁄2 hours until almost tender.
  3. Step 4
    • Add the mushrooms and continue to cook the stew for another 30–40 minutes or until the beef is tender.
    • Remove the orange zest and herbs, correct the seasoning, and serve.

NOTE
If making this a day or two in advance, I would add the mushrooms and finish cooking it on the day it is to be eaten, for the best results.