1½lb/700g diced stewing beef
2 carrots, diced
24 tiny pearl onions
5oz/150g smoked bacon lardons
6 cloves of garlic
16-20 button mushrooms
Fresh herbs (rosemary and thyme)
2oz/50g plain flour
¾ bottle red wine
1 tsp tomato purée
10fl oz/300ml beef stock
This classic French dish is perfect for all the family to enjoy.
1Remove the fat or sinew from the meat and cut it into pieces. Heat a large pan with a little butter and oil and quickly brown off the meat in batches. Brown it all over, but do not cook too much meat at any given time, otherwise it will begin to stew. When the meat is sealed off, transfer to a large casserole dish, then add the diced carrots.
2Peel the onions and, without washing the pan, quickly brown off the smoked bacon lardons with the pearl onions, diced garlic and button mushrooms. Add a sprig or two of rosemary and thyme at this stage. Scatter the plain flour over the onions and mushrooms and mix well over a low heat.
Don't worry about the flour browning off at this stage as this will only help to colour and develop the flavour of the sauce.
3Pour in the red wine and beef stock slowly and continue mixing with a wooden spoon, in order to combine the flour with the liquid and thicken the sauce.
4Bring the sauce to the boil for four to five minutes. Stir in the tomato purée then taste the sauce and correct the seasoning if you feel that more is required. Pre-heat the oven to 150°C/300°F/ gas mark 2.
5Pour the boiling liquid over the meat and cover with a tight-fitting lid. Transfer to the oven for approximately three to three-and-a-half hours. Don't forget to take the dish out of the oven every so often (perhaps every 50 minutes to one hour) and give it a stir, making sure that the liquid has not evaporated. If it has, you will need to add a little more stock.
6When you've finished cooking the Beef Bourguignon, bring the entire casserole dish to the table and sprinkle some chopped parsley over the top. I like to serve this dish with some baby boiled potatoes dressed with butter and chopped parsley, or with a large chunk of bread and a glass of a good full-bodied Merlot.