Boeuf a la bourguignon with heartshaped croutons

Yield: 4 servings

Measure Ingredient
3 cups Dry red wine
2 cups Beef stock or canned broth
¼ cup Marc de Bourgogne or
\N \N Good-quality brandy
1 large Onion, chopped
2 smalls Carrots, chopped
4 \N Garlic cloves, sliced
1 teaspoon Dried thyme
1 teaspoon Dried rosemary
10 \N Peppercorns
12 \N Parsley stems
4 \N Whole cloves
4 \N Allspice berries
1 \N Bay leaf
3 pounds Beef chuck, cut into 2 inch
\N \N Pieces
\N \N Salt and pepper
¼ pounds Slab bacon (rind removed and
\N \N Reserved) sliced lengthwise
¼ \N Inch
\N \N Thick, crosswise into pieces
½ \N Inch wide
2 tablespoons Butter
1 tablespoon Oil
1 tablespoon Tomato paste
1 pounds Pearl onions
4 tablespoons Butter
\N pinch Sugar
1 pounds Button mushrooms
\N \N Beurre Manie (equal parts
\N \N Flour and softened butter,
\N \N Mixed together, about
1 tablespoon Each)
\N \N Heartshaped croutons:
6 slices Firm white bread, crusts
\N \N Removed, cut into heart
\N \N Shapes
3 tablespoons Unsalted butter, melted
¼ cup Minced fresh parsley

In a large bowl combine marinade ingredients and beef. Chill, covered, overnight. Drain beef, reserving marinade and vegetables separately; pat beef dry and season with salt and pepper.

Preheat oven to 275/F. Cover bacon and rind with cold water, bring to a boil and simmer 3 minutes. Drain. In a large casserole set over moderate heat cook bacon lardons in butter and oil, stirring often, until golden. With a slotted spoon transfer lardons to paper towels to drain.

In casserole over moderately high heat brown beef in bacon fat, in batches. Pour off all but 1 tablespoon of fat from casserole. Add reserved vegetable mixture and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Add reserved marinade liquid, tomato paste, reserved bacon rind and salt and pepper, bring liquid to a boil and cook in oven, covered, 3 hours. Skim fat from stew and drain meat and vegetables, reserving cooking liquid. Return liquid and meat to casserole.

Meanwhile make vegetable garnish: In a skillet cover onions with water, add 1 tablespoon of butter, sugar and salt and pepper to taste. Simmer onions until almost tender. Raise heat to high and reduce cooking liquid to 2 tablespoons. Continue to cook onions, shaking pan over heat, until golden brown and glazed. In a skillet set over moderately high heat, melt remaining butter and add mushrooms and salt and pepper to taste. Cook mushrooms, tossing often, for 7 minutes, or until firm. Add the onions and mushrooms to the casserole. Bring liquid in casserole to a simmer and add enough Beurre Manie, bit by bit, stirring constantly, to lightly thicken sauce.

Make croutons: Brush both sides of bread with melted butter, arrange on a baking sheet and bake in a 400 F. oven until golden brown. Dip edges of bread in Bourguignon sauce and then in parsley.

To serve: spoon meat and vegetables into shallow serving dishes and garnish with croutons.

Yield: 6 servings



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