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!

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

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

 

Best Ever Steak Marinade

steak

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!

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

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.**

Boogaloo Wonderland Sandwich

Boogaloo Sandwichn

“What in the heck is a Boogaloo Wonderland Sandwich?”. That was EXACTLY my reaction when I came across this recipe in the current months issue of, Cook’s Country Magazine . (April/May 2018) It is basically a Sloppy Joe sandwich but with a bit of a different flavor profile. It is more sweet and zesty instead of just savory like traditional Sloppy Joe sandwiches are. Evidently, this is a popular sandwich in the Detroit area, I was intrigued to try something so regional so I decided to give it a go! Shockingly, my daughter, who is the the most picky eater in the world, loved it! She ate it with no complaint and she didn’t try to pick anything out of it which is always a plus! When Emerson eats something, I know the recipe is a keeper!

I adhered to the recipe for the most part, making only a slight adjustment with the chili powder. I felt that 3/4 tsp of hot chili powder would be a touch too hot for kids so I cut that down to just under a 1/2 tsp which was the right call. The finished meal had just enough to heat to be noticeable but not overwhelming. Also, I was a little short on beef so I used 1 lb of ground beef and 1/4 lb of ground pork. The cooked meat turned out very tender and delicious so I recommend trying the combination if you have both on hand. Lastly, I didn’t have any Italian sub rolls in the house so I decided to use English Muffins instead which worked out fine, they were nice and sturdy and held all of the meat well.

Just a little footnote, in the future I think I might adjust my seasonings to make it a touch less sweet. I think the combination of brown sugar and apple cider vinegar in the amounts called for added a little too much sweetness for my palate but that’s just preference. Feel free to adjust the seasonings to your liking. Enjoy!

Ingredients

For the sauce

  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 3 tbs apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tbs packed brown sugar
  • 2 tbs Worcestershire sauce
  • 3/4 tsp dried thyme
  • 3/4 tsp dry mustard
  • 3/4 tsp granulated garlic powder
  • 3/4 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 tsp black pepper

For the sandwiches

  • 1 tbs vegetable oil
  • 1 1/4 lbs 85% lean ground beef
  • 1 onion, sliced thinly
  • 1 tsp black pepper
  • 3/4 tsp Kosher salt
  • 4 (6 inch) Italian sub rolls or English muffins, toasted
  • 8 slices of American cheese

Instructions

For the sauce, combine all of the ingredients in a small saucepan and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook, whisking constantly, until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Set aside.

For the sandwiches, adjust the oven rack to the middle position and heat to 350ºF. Heat the oil in a nonstick skillet over medium-high heat until just smoking. Add the beef, onion, pepper and salt and cook, breaking up the pieces with a spoon, until the liquid has evaporated and the meat begins to sizzle, about 10 minutes.

Add 1 cup of the sauce and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium and simmer until slightly thickened, about 1 minute.

Place rolls on a rimmed baking sheet. Coat the bottoms of the bread with the remaining sauce. Evenly divide the meat mixture among the bottom of the rolls and top with 2 slices of American cheese. Bake until the cheese is melted and the rolls are warmed through, about 5 minutes. Cover each sandwich with the top of a bun and serve.

The BEST Beef and Broccoli

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!

Ingredients

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

Instructions

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.

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!

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

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.

 

Braised Short Ribs

shortribs1

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.

Ingredients

  • 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

Instructions

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.

shortribs2