My Kitchen Smells Like ……..


Yes, there are wonderful aromas coming from my kitchen. On any given day, I am testing, tasting & tweeking new recipes with wonderful ingredients. Having just returned from The Good Food Awards & The Fancy Food Show, both in San Francisco — my test kitchen has been bursting with new products to taste.

Exciting as new flavours are, I have been thinking a lot about culinary memories lately … & foods that I have been craving in the slightly cooler weather.

Many of my food memories in winter are filled with wonderful dinners of stews & casseroles & of course beef bourguignon.

What are some of your favourite food memories & recipes to make ?

Here is a great beef bourguignon to take the chill off a winter night.

Beef Bourguignon

4 pounds boneless stewing beef, cut into 2 inch cubes

⅓ cup olive oil

½ large onion, peeled, sliced

1 large carrot, peeled, sliced

2 garlic, cloves, crushed

3 cups dry red wine, preferably, from, burgundy

1 28 ounce can tomato, chopped, with juice

2 cups beef stock

2 sprigs fresh thyme

3 tablespoons softened unsalted butter

3 tablespoons flour

¾ pound button mushroom, cleaned, sliced

salt and pepper

Brown Braised Onions

2 x 10 ounce packages pearl onions

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon unsalted butter

salt and pepper


Beef Bourguignon
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

2. Trim beef. Dry well on paper towels. Heat 1 tablespoon of oil in large Dutch oven over medium heat. In batches, using about 1 tablespoon of olive oil per batch, brown beef. Transfer to bowl.

3. Add another tablespoon of olive oil to Dutch oven and sauté onion, carrot and garlic 4 to 5 minutes until lightly browned. Add to beef in bowl.

4. Deglaze pan with 1 cup wine, scraping browned bits from bottom.

5. Add browned beef, onion and carrot, remaining wine, garlic, tomatoes, stock and thyme back to pan. Bring mixture to boil over high heat. Remove from heat and cover.

6. Transfer to oven and cook 2½ to 3 hours until beef is fork tender.

7. Strain stew through a colander over a saucepan. Set beef and vegetables aside.

8. Skim fat from surface of liquid in saucepan and bring to a boil. Reduce liquid to 3 or 4 cups. Season.

9. In small bowl, mash butter and flour to a paste with fork.

10. Remove sauce from heat and whisk in flour paste until dissolved. Bring to a boil over medium heat. Reduce heat and simmer 2 to 3 minutes until slightly thickened.

11. Add beef and vegetables back to sauce.

12. In a large skillet, heat a tablespoon of olive oil over medium heat. Add mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper. Cook mushrooms 4 to 5 minutes until browned. Add mushrooms and Brown Braised Onions to beef mixture and sauce.

Brown Braised Onions
1. Cut off the root end of each onion. Then cut a small cross in the other end. This will allow the skins to slip off easily after blanching.

2. Add onions to saucepan of boiling salted water. Blanch about 1 minute. Drain onions then immediately run under cold water. Slice off ends of onions and skins will slip off easily.

3. Heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add onions. Cook slowly 35 to 40 minutes until browned and glazed. Season with salt & pepper.

Serves 8

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