Boeuf Bourguignonne (Beef Burgundy)

beef burgundy

When winter finally makes it arrival all I crave is warm, cozy comfort food. Boeuf Bourguignonne, also known as Beef Burgundy, is a classic French dish that is rich, savory and soul warming and it is one of my favorite dishes on a cold winter night. It is cooked low and slow in red wine and beef stock which makes for a deep, flavorful stew. As the dish simmers, the alcohol will burn away leaving behind a rich, complex flavor. Beef Burgundy originated in the Burgundy region of France so as you would expect, a nice Burgundy wine works well in this dish. Other good choices are a Beaujolais, Pinot Noir or any other French red wine from that area.

I came across this particular recipe a few years ago in a publication by Paula Deen entitled, “Cooking With Paula Deen“. (November 2013, Vol. 9 Issue 6) She calls for mushrooms however, as I don’t care for them I chose to leave them out. Also, she recommended adding the carrots in the last 30 minutes of cooking but I find in that short of a time the carrots do not soften and you’re left with hard, crunchy pieces which is not what you want in this dish. Therefore, I like to add them in with the beef, wine, stock and spices and allow them to simmer for the full 2.5 hours, I find the texture is much better with the extra cooking time.

Unlike a traditional stew where you cook chunks of potatoes with the meat and other vegetables, this dish is served over mashed potatoes . I like to take it one step further and serve them over garlic mashed, I love the extra flavor it adds to this dish. For instructions on making garlic mashed potatoes, see the note at the bottom of my Homemade Mashed Potatoes recipe. Enjoy!


  • 2 tbs vegetable oil
  • 2 lbs chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 1″ cubes
  • 1 tsp Kosher salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 (14.4 ounce) bag frozen pearl onions
  • 1 (8 ounce) package sliced baby portobello mushrooms, optional
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 1 (32 ounce) carton beef stock
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 10 sprigs fresh thyme
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 4 carrots, cut into 1″ chunks
  • 1 cup frozen peas


In a large Dutch oven, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Sprinkle the beef with salt and pepper.

Add the beef to the pan and cook until browned on all sides. Using a slotted spoon, remove the beef and set aside. Add the onions, mushrooms and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes or until tender. Return the beef to the pan with the stock, wine, carrots, thyme and bay leaves.

Bring to a boil then reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook for 2 hours. Add the frozen peas and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes more.

Serve over Homemade Mashed Potatoes


Brown Gravy Meatballs Over Buttered Noodles

gravy meatballs

I absolutely love me some homemade meatballs and I could drink hot gravy by the gallon so I thought to myself, why not bring these two delicious things together? Brown Gravy Meatballs over Buttered Noodles is a really warm, cozy meal that is perfect for the cool nights of autumn. It’s also really easy to make and the best part?……………it’s kid friendly too! What kid doesn’t love buttered pasta and meatballs? My kids devoured this meal and even asked for seconds!

To make the meatballs, I used my Italian Meatball recipe but I just rolled them smaller into bite-sized servings. I like to bake them simply because you don’t have to pay attention as you do when frying but if you prefer to fry, that is perfectly fine too. You can even make these meatballs ahead of time which really speeds up the cooking of this meal. Simply thaw the cooked mini meatballs and add them right to the hot gravy mixture to warm through. So easy!

In our house we LOVE gravy and when making pasta dishes such as this one my husband specifically asks for his noodles to be very “saucy”. Therefore, I like to double the brown gravy so we have plenty to go around and if there are any leftovers, they will stay more moist in the fridge. You can use beef broth in this recipe as well but I much prefer beef stock as it has a much richer, beefier flavor. Kitchen Basics® brand is my go-to but any brand will suffice. Lastly, add as much (or as little) red wine as you’d like, no need to measure and be overly specific here. The red wine adds a really nice, rich flavor to the finished brown gravy. Enjoy!


For the meatballs

  • 1 lb of 80% ground beef or a combination of beef and pork
  • 1/2 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp finely minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 2 tbs fresh flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 3/4 tsp Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2-3 slices white bread, crusts removed and moistened with water

For the brown gravy

  • 2 cups beef stock, divided
  • 1 tbs cornstarch
  • 2 tbs unsalted butter
  • 1 onion, finely diced
  • 1 tbs Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tbs ketchup
  • 2 tbs chopped fresh parsley leaves
  • splash of red wine

For the finished dish

  • 1 lb wide egg noodles
  • 6 tbs unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • fresh parsley, for garnish


For the meatballs – Preheat oven to 350ºF. Except for the white bread, combine all of the ingredients together in a large bowl. Mix until just combined, do not over mix or the meatballs will be tough. Break off small pieces of the moistened bread and add it to the meatball mixture. Mix into the meat and then continue to add more bread until it’s all combined.

Form the meat into bite-sized meatballs and place them about 1″ apart on a sheet pan lined with a Silpat® or aluminum foil. Bake for about 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Alternatively, the meatballs can also be fried in oil until crispy and golden brown.

For the gravy – Whisk together 1/2 cup beef stock and cornstarch in a small bowl, set aside. Over medium heat, melt the butter in a pan. Add the onions to the skillet and cook until golden brown and translucent, about 3-4 minutes.

Whisk together the remaining 1 1/2 cups beef stock, Worcestershire and ketchup and mix until well combined. Add to the pan along with a splash of red wine. Bring the mixture to a boil then reduce the heat and gradually whisk in cornstarch mixture. Cook until the sauce has thickened, about 3-4 minutes. Add more beef stock as needed until desired consistency is reached.

To finish – Add the cooked mini meatballs to the sauce and stir to coat. Keep warm over low heat.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the egg noodles to the boiling water and cook until al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain the pasta and toss with the softened butter.

Place the buttered noodles on a large serving platter and top with the brown gravy meatballs and sauce. Garnish with parsley, Serve hot.

**TIP – Make the mini meatballs ahead of time and freeze them for later use in this dish. Thaw the cooked meatballs and then add them right to the hot gravy mixture to warm through. Proceed according to recipe instructions.**

Best Ever Steak Marinade


Making your own steak marinade is very easy, super flavorful and SO much better than anything you can buy in a packet at the supermarket. Store-bought marinades are always loaded with ingredients you cannot pronounce as well as a ton of sugar and salt. Try this delicious marinade the next time you grill up a steak and I promise you will never go back to the store-bought version again. Enjoy!


  • 2 tbs extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tbs balsamic vinegar
  • 2 tbs soy sauce
  • 2 tsp mustard (Dijon, yellow or deli style)
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, minced
  • Kosher salt and pepper, to taste


Place all of the ingredients into a bowl and whisk until combined. Pour over meat and allow to marinate for at least 30 minutes or up to an hour. Grill meat as desired.

**Tip – Baste the meat with the marinade as it grills. Do not serve any of the leftover marinade as it is contaminated with the juices from the raw meat.**

The BEST Beef and Broccoli


I LOVE Beef and Broccoli but often times when you order it from a take-out restaurant it’s overly sweet, super fatty and the meat can be less than desirable. Years ago I came across this recipe online and the FIRST time I made it was the LAST time I ordered this meal from a take-out place. It’s seriously THAT good! This is also a great meal to make when you’re short time as it comes together very quickly, you can even marinate the meat ahead of time! My super picky eaters love this meal and don’t even add ketchup which is shocking since they add ketchup to absolutely everything! I love to serve this over buttery rice which is another super quick thing to make. Just add butter, water, salt and pepper to the rice, bring to a boil and let simmer. If you need it made even quicker, don’t hesitate to use Minute Rice intead.

Be sure when making this dish that you use low-sodium soy sauce, the regular version will result in the meal tasting overly salty. This recipe calls for flank steak, which I don’t care for, so feel free to substitute in whatever steak you have on hand. I’ve used a sirloin, London broil, and even pre-sliced stir fry meat and it’s all been delicious. Lastly, if you don’t have fresh broccoli in the house you can use frozen instead, I like the Steam Fresh® bags because they are super easy and cook quickly. If you are using frozen broccoli and cooking it in the microwave, skip the step below where you sauté it in the oil, that’s for fresh broccoli only. Simply add the cooked broccoli at the end right before serving. Enjoy!


For the meat marinade

  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 tbs cornstarch
  • 1 tbs low-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tbs water
  • 2 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 1/2 lbs flank steak, sliced into thin strips

For the sauce

  • 1/2 c low-sodium soy sauce
  • 2 tbs brown sugar
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tbs flour
  • 1 tbs sherry
  • 3 tbs vegetable oil
  • 2 heads broccoli, crowns only
  • Sesame seeds, for garnish


For the marinade – Whisk together the baking soda, sugar, cornstarch, soy sauce, water, and vegetable oil in a large bowl. Toss the steak with the marinade to coat. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour, then proceed below.

In a small bowl, stir together the soy sauce, brown sugar, garlic, flour and sherry until smooth. Set aside.

In a large sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons of vegetable oil over high heat until shimmering. Add the broccoli and sauté 3 minutes, stirring often. Transfer broccoli to a plate. (skip this step if using pre-cooked frozen broccoli)

Reduce heat to medium-high. Carefully add the remaining tablespoon of oil to the hot pan. Add the marinated meat and half of the sauce mixture and sauté for 3- 4 minutes, stirring often, until the meat is cooked through and no longer pink.

Stir in the broccoli and remaining sauce. Sauté 1 minute more. Serve over rice and garnish with sesame seeds.

Italian Meatballs

pasta and meatballs

Being Italian, meatballs were a staple in my home growing up. There was nothing better than sneaking a crispy, hot meatball right out of the fryer. Pure heaven! Nowadays, I tend to bake my meatballs because it’s less mess and they end up in the sauce anyway but when I am feeling it, in the fryer they will go!

I’m always playing around with my meatball recipe but lately my “go to” is an adaptation of the recipe listed in the The Sopranos Family Cookbook . They really are so delicious and remind me a lot of the ones my mom use to make when I was a kid. I love a strong cheese, garlic, and parsley flavor in my meatballs so I tend to throw a little extra in every time I make them. Also, if you don’t have fresh parley on hand just substitute with a small handful of dried parsley instead, they will still be delicious. The original recipe calls for only the use of breadcrumbs however, I had found that when I made them that way the meatballs were just a little too hard for my liking. You really want them to have a nice softness when eating so adding in the moistened white bread gave the meat the extra chew and softness that I was looking for. A drizzle of olive oil into the meat just adds a nice touch of extra flavor.

These meatballs are as delicious with sauce as they are for any cocktail meatball recipe too. I detest store-bought frozen meatballs so I when I need to make a cocktail meatball appetizer I always use this recipe. Just roll them smaller and bake (or fry) for less time. You can find the recipe for my out of this world Whiskey BBQ Cocktail Meatballs right here.

Once the meatballs are done cooking, allow them to simmer for a while in your homemade sauce so that they become even softer and absorb all of the delicious flavor of the tomatoes. Enjoy!

  • 1 lb of 80% ground beef or a combination of beef and pork
  • 1/2 cup Italian seasoned breadcrumbs
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 tsp finely minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 2 tbs fresh flat leaf parsley, finely chopped
  • 3/4 tsp Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • Drizzle of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2-3 slices white bread, crusts removed and moistened with water or milk


Preheat oven to 350ºF. Except for the white bread, combine all of the ingredients together in a large bowl. Mix until just combined, do not over mix or the meatballs will be tough.

Break off small pieces of the moistened bread and add it to the meatball mixture. Mix into the meat and then continue to add more bread until it’s all combined.

Form the meat into balls and place them about 2″ apart on a sheet pan lined with a Silpat® or aluminum foil. Bake for about 30 minutes or until golden brown. Alternatively, the meatballs can also be fried in oil until crispy and golden brown.

If serving pasta, add to the simmering sauce so the meatballs absorb the flavor and become softer.

Bacon and Stout Beef Chili

Bacon Stout Chili

Although the cool, crisp days of fall have yet to arrive in New York (summer just won’t let go!) I was in the mood for a hearty, warm bowl of chili. Instead of a typical chili made with ground meat I decided to try out a cut up chuck roast instead. I was pleasantly surprised at just how tender and delicious this very tough piece of meat turned out. The key is to cook it low and slow, don’t try to rush this dish or you will be left with very chewy, tough, inedible meat. I promise, your patience will be rewarded.

The recipe is from the October 2017 issue of Food Network Magazine . (page 73) The original recipe is for Beef and Bean Chili but they offered a variation that included stout and bacon. Let’s face it, everything is better with bacon so I couldn’t pass that recipe up! I used Guinness Drought Stout but feel free to use your favorite brand stout for this chili.

This chili goes great with sturdy corn tortilla chips, cornbread, or even a nice slab of hot, buttered beer bread. Top with cheese, sour cream, bacon, scallions, or anything else that you like. Enjoy!


  • 2 tbs vegetable oil
  • 2 lbs chuck roast, cut into 3/4″ cubes
  • Kosher salt and pepper, to taste
  • 3-4 slices thick cut bacon, chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, finely chopped (remove seeds for less heat)
  • 3 tbs chili powder, plus more to taste
  • 2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tbs tomato paste
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) diced tomatoes
  • 3 cups beef stock (I like Kitchen Basics brand)
  • 2 (15 oz) cans small red beans
  • 1 (12 oz) bottle stout beer


Cook the bacon in a large pot until slightly crisp. Remove and set aside for topping.

Over medium-high heat, add the beef to the bacon fat and cook until browned, about 2-3 minutes. Do not overcrowd the pan, work in batches. Remove the meat with a slotted spoon and set aside.

Reduce the heat to medium and add the vegetable oil to the pot. Add the onion and cook until softened and browned, about 5 minutes. Stir occasionally as it cooks. Add the garlic and jalapeno and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 2 minutes.

Add the chili powder, cumin, salt, pepper, and tomato paste. While stirring, cook until deep red, about 2 minutes.

Add the beef and all of its juices back into the pot along with the beef stock, tomatoes, and stout beer. Bring to a boil then reduce the heat until the chili is simmering. Cook until the meat is fork tender, about 1.5 hours. Occasionally stir and scrape the bottom of the pot as it cooks.

Add the beans with some of their liquid and continue to simmer until the chili thickens, about 25-30 minutes. Season with additional salt, pepper, and chili as needed. Serve hot topped with grated cheddar cheese and the crisped bacon pieces from earlier.

**Tip** – If the chili isn’t thickening up enough, bring the chili to a boil and then add some masa flour to the pot or a mixture of water and all-purpose flour. Allow the chili to simmer until it thickens up. If the chili is too thick, add a little more stock as needed to thin it out.


Cincinnati Chili – “Four Way”


I was always intrigued by Cincinnati Chili, I kind of loved the way the chili was served over a plate of steaming hot spaghetti instead of with just chips or cornbread, so a while back I finally decided to give it a try. I’m not 100% sure where I initially came across this particular recipe however, I did find that *most* of the recipes online were almost all exact. In my research I had been seeing a lot of references to “Skyline Chili” and came to learn that Skyline is actually a chain of chili restaurants across the Cincinnati area that are famous for their chili. Basically, most of the Cincinnati Chili recipes you’ll find online are a hacked version of the famous Skyline one.

This chili was excellent, the meat was very tender and flavorful and it was definitely a hearty dish. Interestingly, instead of just browning the meat and then adding in the spices this recipe call for simmering the meat for about a half hour so that it breaks apart into small pieces and softens. It sounds (and actually looks) pretty gross but trust me, don’t skip this step. Cooking the meat this way really makes a difference in the final product. Be aware that this is a chili that you will need to make ahead of time. Once cooked it’s refrigerated overnight so that the next day you can scrape away all of the excess fat which makes for a leaner, less greasy tasting chili.

Cincinnati Chili has a very interesting flavor profile, especially if you’re use to traditional southwest chili recipes which tend to be hot and spicy. While this chili has some heat, there is also a sweetness and warm spice flavor which comes from the chocolate, cloves, and cinnamon. I recommend cutting back a little on the cinnamon and cloves, the first time I made it I followed the recipe “as is” however, I found that for me the cinnamon and clove flavor was a little too overpowering. The next time I used just an 1/8 tsp of cloves and a 1/4 tsp of cinnamon and I liked that ratio much better. The nice thing about any chili recipe is that you can play around with the spices and seasonings until you find a flavor and level of heat that pleases your palate.

When ordering chili in Cincinnati there is a very specific ordering code you must adhere to. For this recipe I served it “four way” which means chili over spaghetti topped with grated Cheddar cheese and diced onions. I also added a handful of crushed oyster crackers to each plate which is also common with this dish. I loved the way the crunchy raw onions, salty crackers, and sharp cheddar cheese all played together with the chili and spaghetti. It was a very flavorful and yummy dish. When making (or ordering) your Cincinnati Chili be sure to specify how you’d like it served.

The Cincinnati “Skyline” Chili Ordering Code

  • 1-way: just chili
  • 2-waychili served over spaghetti
  • 3-waychili over spaghetti with grated Cheddar cheese
  • 4-waychili over spaghetti with grated Cheddar cheese and diced onions
  • 5-waychili over spaghetti with grated Cheddar cheese, diced onions, and beans


  • 1 quart cold water
  • 2 lbs ground beef 
  • 1 28oz can crushed tomatoes 
  • 2 yellow onions, diced
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 oz unsweetened chocolate
  • 1/4 cup chili powder
  • 1 tsp cayenne
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 2 tbsp cider vinegar
  • 1 whole bay leaf
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 1/2 tsp Kosher salt


Add the beef and water to a 4-quart pot. Bring to a simmer and cook until the ground beef is in very small, tender pieces, about 30 minutes. Stir occasionally to break up the meat.

Add in all of the seasonings and spices. Simmer on low heat, uncovered, for 3 hours. Continue to add more water to the pot if the chili becomes too thick and to avoid the chili burning to the bottom of the pot.

Once the chili is done, refrigerate it overnight. Before serving the next day, scrape the layer of fat from the top and discard then warm the chili up over medium heat.



Braised Short Ribs


A couple of years ago my husband and I went out to dinner for our anniversary and I had braised short ribs and it was love at first bite! The meat was fork tender, the flavor was deep and rich, and it was simply heavenly. I had always said I’d like to try making them at home because it seemed so simple and now, almost 2 years later, I finally got around to doing just that.

I did a little research into different short rib recipes and while they were all fairly similar, I decided to go with  Gordon Ramsay’s Slow Cooked Short Ribs and adapted it only slightly. They were so simple to make and they came out absolutely perfect. The short ribs were so tender and flavorful and the wine sauce was out of this world!

In the original recipe Gordon calls for a pancetta lardons and chestnut mushroom topping for the short ribs. I didn’t have time to look for actual pancetta lardons so instead, I used regular sliced pancetta which worked out fine and imparted a really nice flavor to the meal. Also, I don’t care for mushrooms so I decided to caramelize sweet Vidalia onions in a little butter and use those on top of the short ribs in place of the mushrooms. I thought it was very good however, I LOVE caramelized onions so the substitution was a good one for me.

Short ribs are a low, slow cook so save this recipe for a day when you’re not pressed for time. The recipe calls for a cook time of 3 to 4 hours, my short ribs were perfectly cooked right at the 3 hour and 15 minute mark, in a 350 degree oven. I served the meat over a side of homemade garlic mashed potatoes.


  • Olive oil, for frying
  • 6-8 thick cut meaty beef short ribs
  • 1 head of garlic, cut in half horiontally
  • 1 heaping tbs of tomato paste
  • 1 (750ml) bottle of red wine (I used Bogle Merlot but any red wine is fine)
  • 4 1/4 cups beef stock (NOT broth)
  • 1/3 lb pancetta lardons OR sliced pancetta
  • 1/2 lb chestnut mushrooms, trimmed and halved OR 3 Vidalia onions, sliced
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper, to taste
  • Chopped fresh parsley, to garnish


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Heat the olive oil in a deep sided roasting tray or large, deep pan over medium to medium high heat. Season the short ribs well with salt and pepper then fry them until they are really well browned on all sides, about 10-15 minutes total cooking time.

Add the halved garlic head, cut side down, pushing it to the bottom of the pan. Add the tomato paste and heat for a minute or two to cook it out. Pour in the entire bottle of wine to deglaze the pan, scrape up any meat bits from the bottom and stir. Bring to a boil and cook until the liquid is reduced by half, about 10-15 minutes. The wine will become very thick and syrupy after reducing. Add the beef stock to the pan, making sure the ribs are nearly covered. Bring to a boil again and then baste the short ribs with the juices.

Cover the roasting tray with foil or a lid and cook in the oven for 3-4 hours, basting every now and again, until the meat is tender and falling away from the bone.

About 10 minutes before the short ribs are about to come out, fry the pancetta for 2-3 minutes or until crispy. Add in the mushrooms and cook for another 4-5 minutes until tender. Drain off any excess fat.

If you prefer to make the caramelized onions – Saute the sliced onions in 5-6 tbs unsalted butter over medium low to medium heat. Season with a little salt and pepper and let the onions cook down until they are richly browned, about 20-25 minutes. Move the onions to the side of the pan and add the pancetta, cooking until crispy. Once the pancetta is done, mix the two and drain off any excess fat.**

When the short ribs are ready, remove from oven, transfer the meat to a serving dish and cover. Remove the garlic from the pan and press through a sieve. Spoon off any excess fat from the cooking liquid then strain through a sieve as well and mix with the garlic. If the sauce its too thin, reduce the cooking liquid by heating it on the stovetop for about 10-15 minutes.

Serve the short ribs topped with the pancetta mixture, a hefty drizzle of the wine sauce, and garnished with fresh parsley.

**Tip** – Instead of using a sieve, I used a gravy separator to press the garlic and bits through as well as separate out the greasy oil from the rich wine sauce. It worked really well and the resulting sauce was extremely rich and flavorful, it also did not need to be reduced down any further.