Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Beef bourguignon

Happy new year all!

We rang in the new year with a quiet dinner. I decided it was time to attack Bouchon's beef bourguignon (patiently waiting on my “to cook” list). We’ve both been under the weather and huddling in but the local grocery store will shop and deliver so I figured if all the ingredients walked in the door I’d be up for slowly and lazily cooking everything. I called in the ingredients and they showed up an hour later. I started cooking the day before to break the recipe up into manageable steps.

The whole process was similar to coq au vin in that it involved making a red wine reduction out of wine seasoned with leeks, onions, carrots, bay leaves, black peppercorns, thyme, parsley, celery and garlic, browning the meat and then braising it in the reduction and beef broth, and then cooking a series of “garnishes” (red and white pearl onions, mushrooms, carrots, lardons and fingerling potatoes) seasoned in the same way as the wine, and combining them with the beef at the last minute. On my first, cursory read nothing seemed too complicated; just a lot of steps and attention to cooking each individual item to the right level. As I got partway through I realized that the braised beef needed to steep in its cooking liquid for at least a day and up to 3 days (argh!) so it was lucky I started early. The great thing about Keller’s version is that it uses luxurious beef short rib for the meat and because the braising liquid is continuously seasoned and clarified the broth develops into a rich, aromatic, almost silky liquid. Since the garnishes are not added until the end, each retain its own distinct color, texture and flavor and the whole dish becomes a cornucopia of wonderful, hearty flavors without becoming overly stew-y and heavy.

I’m not going to post the recipe because it was pages long; but if anyone would like it, I’m happy to bite the bullet and send it along.


Anonymous said...

WOW! That's a lot of work but it sounds like it was worth it. Your description made my mouth water. Great job. Happy New Year!

Anonymous said...

I would love to have the recipe for Beef Bourguignon. I am not sure how to e-mail you to request the recipe be sent to me.

By the way, I absolutely love your blog. It is wonderful!

Sabra said...

Hi Adeline. Thanks for your kind note. I'd be happy to forward the recipe, however it's quite long (not especially complicated, just long) and I'd rather not retype it. You can email me at skrockodile (at) gmail (dot) com and I'll scan it and email it to you if that works (or email me a fax number or address if you prefer).

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