This recipe, in its original form, is NOT for the faint of heart...and honestly, neither is my take on it, but it is a teeny bit easier and IMO just as yummy! For those who work during the week, this is a good recipe for the weekend, or to make ahead.
It is not something you "whip together" after a long day at work...but for ANY person who dares to turn on their oven and attempt ANY recipe, you have to give it a whirl at least once in your lifetime.
I am notorious for trying a recipe to a "T" and then adding my own spin to it the next time around. For example, there are certain spices I am not real fond of...but I LOVE garlic...so I often substitute garlic for say, cumin (ewwww)
But Julia Childs recipe for Beef Bourguignon is one you must try verbatim, and then you can add your own spin to it. Google it...you will find it and after you read it, you will understand why I put my "spin" on it!
BTW, I got an "oven proof" dutch oven thingy for Christmas...truly awesome. But you can do this in your skillets and casserole dishes or a regular dutch oven. But again, not for the faint of heart and NOT a crock pot recipe!
Examples of my spin on this recipe.
First of all, what the heck is a "lardon." In todays world, and certainly in the south, we buy good ole' BACON. So I take 6 oz of thick cut bacon, cut it into pieces and saute it in the olive oil. Forget the boiling thing....just fry it in the oil. (Did I mention I am from the south...fry it baby!)
Lean stew beef...i.e. pot/chuck roast. You cook this for hours...so any roast will be fine!
Beef stock...Campbell's soup beef consomme...seriously.
Herb bouquet...seriously, if you have cheesecloth laying around and want to make a "bouquet", be my guest...otherwise, throw it in the pot (besides, I don't like bay leaf and never use it anyway...but if you do make sure you fish it out before serving!)
Cloves of smashed garlic...I ALWAYS use the pre-chopped garlic you buy in the jar in the fresh produce section at the grocery store...always...and I use LOTS of garlic!
"Young and full bodied" red wine. How about cheap and red? You are cooking it for 3-4 hours...trust me, nobody I know is going to know it only cost $4.99 at the grocery store!!!
A few other tips....I don't do the mushroom, pearl onion thing seperately. I saute them in butter and olive oil, with some garlic, and then add them to the pot to cook with the roast.
Also, no self respecting Southerner EVER drains or disposes of oil (either after sauting the veggies or cooking the roast) and I serve it with the carrots and onions...I don't drain them off. Keep in mind, I added the mushrooms BEFORE I cooked it...so they are in there too.
I do drain the "juices" off the vegetables and roast into a sauce pan and make a "gravy" or sauce with it after it is all cooked...usually you can do that by adding a teaspoon or so of corn starch to it to thicken it up...then just pour it back over the meat and veggies.
Noodles, mashed potatoes, rice....makes no difference...you won't care what you eat this with.
It is seriously awesome....
I can smell mine cooking now...can't wait!!!!