A timeless classic
Classic boeuf bourguignon originated in the Burgundy (Bourgogne) region of eastern France. It’s traditionally made with a Burgundy wine, but any good Pinot noir will do if you can’t source a good French Burgundy.
The Burgundy region of France is well-known for its wine and cuisine. Boeuf bourguignon was traditionally made by peasants, who used cheaper cuts of beef and cooked them slowly in red wine to tenderize the meat. The dish became popular in the 20th century, thanks to the influence of French chef Auguste Escoffier, who included it in his cookbook “Le Guide Culinaire.“
This classic French stew is perfect for cold, blustery winter days. It is hearty and delicious, especially when enjoyed with a nice glass or two of quality French red wine!
It’s ideal for a weekend meal with friends or family, or if you’re planning a French-themed dinner party. A firm favourite of mine, this recipe has proven popular time and again.
Getting the best results
Serve your finished boeuf bourguignon with green veg, such as wilted green spinach, French beans, and kale. It works great with creamy mashed potatoes, or for a real treat, try serving it with these amazing fondant potatoes. Want to mix things up a little? Pair it with my perfect Yorkshire puddings. Just don’t tell any French people…
For the very best results, marinate the meat overnight using a cook marinade (explained in the recipe instructions below) and use good-quality, marbled braising steak, which will stay nice and tender, rather than leaner braising steak, which could dry out in cooking.
As with all dishes that involve cooking with wine, you should use a good quality wine. If you wouldn’t drink it, don’t cook with it!
Serve this classic boeuf bourguignon with a nice glass of full-bodied red wine, green veg, boiled or mashed potatoes, or my tasty fondant potatoes. Add a little freshly chopped parsley, sprinkled over the bourguignon, for presentation and to add a little colour to the finished dish.
Boeuf Bourguignon is a classic French dish that is perfect for a cosy night in, or a special occasion. The slow-cooked beef, red wine, and savoury vegetables combine to create a dish that is both hearty and elegant. Try making it for your next dinner party, and impress your guests with this timeless recipe.
Classic boeuf bourguignon
- 2 kg braising steak cubed. Marbled beef is best
- 250 g pancetta smoked (or use bacon lardons)
- 400 g chestnut mushrooms whole
- 500 g shallots peeled
- 1 garlic whole bulb, sliced horizontally
- 2 carrots peeled and roughly chopped
- 1 onions large, peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 sticks celery roughly chopped
- 300 ml beef stock use a good-quality, fresh stock for best results
- 2 bottles red wine a good-quality burgundy is best
- 5 tbsps brandy
- 4 tbsps olive oil
- 2 sprigs fresh thyme
- 4 bay leaves
- 2 tbsps plain flour
- 50 g butter unsalted
- 1 handful fresh parsley chopped
- pinch black pepper ground
- pinch sea salt
For the cook marinade
- Heat 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large saucepan, add the carrot, onion and celery and cook for a few minutes, until the onion begins to soften and turn translucent
- Add the thyme, bay leaves, garlic, ground black pepper and both bottles of red wine and bring to the boil
- Once boiling, turn the heat down and simmer the mixture for 15 – 20 minutes, then set aside and leave to cool
- Once cooled, place the marbled braising steak in a large bowl, pour over the marinade, cover it and leave in the fridge overnight
To cook the bourguignon
- Remove the marinating from the fridge about an hour before you’re ready to start cooking, to allow the meat to come up to room temperature
- Heat your oven to 150C (Gas 2) and drain the beef from the marinade, with a colander or slotted spoon. Keep the marinade mixture – you’ll be needing that!
- Heat half the butter and 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large frying pan. Add the pancetta (or lardons) and cook until browned. Add the shallots and cook for a further 2 minutes before transferring to a large casserole dish
- Pat-dry the braising steak and heat up 1 tbsp of olive oil in a large saucepan. Brown the meat in stages, taking care not to add too much at a time (you want the meat to brown off on all sides, not to just stew in the frying pan)
- Once all the beef is browned, put it in the casserole dish along with the shallots, pancetta and the marinade vegetables
- Deglaze the frying pan with a couple of tablespoons of marinade liquid and pour the deglazed mixture into the casserole dish
- Now add the remaining marinade, beef stock and flour to the casserole dish and stir in. Bring the mixture to the boil, then cover and put it in the oven for about 3 and a half hours, until the beef is well cooked and tender
- About halfway through the cooking, heat the rest of the butter and olive oil in a frying pan and brown the mushrooms. Then add the brandy and cook for about 5 minutes
- Once cooked, add the mushrooms and brandy to the casserole dish, stir and put it back in the oven until the stew is ready