Slow-Cooker Beef Bourguignon
I know exactly the first time I made Beef Bourguignon: It was August 15th, 2009. Am I a genius with an impeccable memory? Well, yes, but that’s not why I remember this date. My son was born on March 15th, 2009, and Carson and I were those first time parents that literally celebrated his monthly birthday. I’m talking balloons, cake, the whole thing, although this finally fizzled out after six months or so (yes, finally). August 15th also happens to be the legendary Julia Child’s birthday, and the movie about her life, Julia & Julia, came out around that time in 2009. After I saw it, all I wanted to do was come home and eat butter—I mean, make Beef Bourguignon—and what better occasion than my son’s 5-month birthday?! Okay sure, there are probably better occasions, but it was still memorable. Over time, I’ve developed the recipe to incorporate a slow cooker, which increases the depth of flavor as well as making it incredibly time-friendly. This is hearty stew at its best. Serve it over buttery noodles and eat it on a cold, winter night (or a random day in August).
Hands-on time: 20 minutes
total time: 6 (or 8) hours 20 minutes
2 1⁄2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1-inch chunks and patted dry with a paper towel
1⁄4 cup all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon dried Italian seasoning
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 1⁄2 teaspoons black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups dry red wine (such as Pinot Noir or Cabernet Sauvignon)
2 cups beef stock
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cups baby potatoes
2 cups baby carrots
1 (12-ounce) package frozen pearl onions
8 ounces button mushrooms, halved
2 teaspoons chopped garlic
Hot cooked egg noodles or rice
Chopped fresh parsley
Combine the beef, flour, Italian seasoning, 1 teaspoon of the salt, and 3⁄4 teaspoon of the pepper in a large bowl; stir until the beef is evenly coated.
Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high. Add the beef mixture, in batches, and cook until browned, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a 6-quart slow cooker.
Reduce the heat to medium; add the wine, beef stock, and tomato paste to the saucepan. Using a wooden spoon, stir, scraping up the browned bits from the bottom of the pan. Stir until the tomato paste is dissolved. Pour on top of the beef mixture in the slow cooker.
Stir in the potatoes, carrots, pearl onions, mushrooms, garlic, and the remaining 1 teaspoon salt and 3⁄4 teaspoon pepper. Cover and cook until the beef and vegetables are very tender, on LOW 8 hours or HIGH 6 hours. Serve over hot cooked egg noodles or rice and sprinkle with parsley.