Boeuf Bourguignon a La Julia Child

Recipe by Chef Kate
READY IN: 5hrs


  • For the Stew
  • 6
    ounces bacon, solid chunk
  • 1
    tablespoon olive oil
  • 3
    lbs lean stewing beef, cut into 2-inch cubes
  • 1
    carrot, peeled and sliced
  • 1
    onion, peeled and sliced
  • 1
    teaspoon salt
  • 14
    teaspoon pepper, freshly ground
  • 2
    tablespoons flour
  • 3
    cups red wine (a full bodied wine like Bordeaux or Burgundy or Chianti)
  • 2 -3
    cups beef stock (Simple Beef stock is posted on the site, unsalted and defatted)
  • 1
    tablespoon tomato paste
  • 2
    garlic cloves, mashed (you may choose to add more)
  • 1
    sprig thyme (or 1/2 teaspoon dred thyme)
  • 1
    bay leaf, preferably fresh
  • For the braised onions
  • 18 -24
    white pearl onions, peeled
  • 1 12
    tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 12
    tablespoons olive oil
  • 12
    cup beef stock
  • salt & fresh ground pepper
  • 1
    sprig thyme
  • 2
    sprigs parsley
  • For the Sauteed Mushrooms
  • 1
    lb mushroom, quartered
  • 2
    tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1
    tablespoon olive oil


  • First prepare the bacon: cut off the rind and reserve.
  • Cut the bacon into lardons about 1/4" thick and 1 1/2" long.
  • Simmer the rind and the lardons for ten minutes in 1 1/2 quarts of water.
  • Drain and dry the lardons and rind and reserve.
  • Pre-heat the oven to 450°F.
  • Put the tablespoon of olive oil in a large (9" - 10" wide, 3" deep) fireproof casserole and warm over moderate heat.
  • Saute the lardons for 2 to 3 minutes to brown lightly.
  • Remove to a side dish with a slotted spoon.
  • Dry off the pieces of beef and saute them, a few at a time in the hot oil/bacon fat until nicely browned on all sides.
  • Once browned, remove to the side plate with the bacon.
  • In the same oil/fat, saute the onion and the carrot until softened.
  • Pour off the fat and return the lardons and the beef to the casserole with the carrots and onion.
  • Toss the contents of the casserole with the salt and pepper and sprinkle with the flour.
  • Set the uncovered casserole in the oven for four minutes.
  • Toss the contents of the casserole again and return to the hot oven for 4 more minutes.
  • Now, lower the heat to 325°F and remove the casserole from the oven.
  • Add the wine and enough stock so that the meat is barely covered.
  • Add the tomato paste, garlic and herbs and the bacon rind.
  • Bring to a simmer on the top of the stove.
  • Cover and place in the oven, adjusting the heat so that the liquid simmers very slowly for three to four hours.
  • The meat is done when a fork pierces it easily.
  • While the meat is cooking, prepare the onions and mushrooms and set them aside till needed.
  • For the onion, if using frozen, make sure they are defrosted and drained.
  • Heat the butter and oil in a large skillet and add the onions to the skillet.
  • Saute over medium heat for about ten minutes, rolling the onions about so they brown as evenly as possible, without breaking apart.
  • Pour in the stock, season to taste, add the herbs, and cover.
  • Simmer over low heat for about 40 to 50 minutes until the onions are perfectly tender but retain their shape and the liquid has mostly evaporated.
  • Remove the herbs and set the onions aside.
  • For the mushrooms, heat the butter and oil over high heat in a large skillet.
  • As soon as the foam begins to subside add the mushrooms and toss and shake the pan for about five minutes.
  • As soon as they have browned lightly, remove from heat.
  • To Finish the Stew:
  • When the meat is tender, remover the casserole from the oven and empty its contents into a sieve set over a saucepan.
  • Wash out the casserole and return the beef and bacon to it (discarding the bits of carrot and onion and herbs which remain in the sieve).
  • Distribute the mushrooms and onions over the meat.
  • Skim the fat off the sauce and simmer it for a minute or two, skimming off any additional fat which rises to the surface.
  • You should be left with about 2 1/2 cups of sauce thick enough to coat a spoon lightly.
  • If the sauce is too thick, add a few tablespoons of stock.
  • If the sauce is too thin, boil it down to reduce to the right consistency.
  • Taste for seasoning.
  • Pour the sauce over the meat and vegetables.
  • If you are serving immediately, place the covered casserole over medium low heat and simmer 2 to 3 minutes.
  • Serve in the casserole or on a warm platter surrounded by noodles, potatoes or rice and garnished with fresh parsley.
  • If serving later or the next day, allow the casserole to cool and place cold, covered casserole in the refrigerator.
  • 20 minutes prior to serving, place over medium low heat and simmer very slowly for ten minutes, occasionally basting the meat and vegetables with the sauce.