This classic French beef stew, otherwise known as Beef Bourguignon, is the ultimate comfort food. Chunks of well-marbled beef are seared in olive oil and then gently braised with garlic and onions in a wine-based broth. After a few hours in the oven, the meat becomes meltingly tender and enveloped in a rich, deeply flavoured sauce.
It takes some time to make but I promise it’s well worth the effort. Aside from being delicious — it is my all-time most popular recipe — it’s a one-pot meal that feeds a crowd. You can also make it a day ahead; in fact, you should because the flavour improves the longer it sits.
A close up!
In all its glory
Browning the beef cubes
- Beef, 1-1/2-inch cubes: 500 grams
- Salt: 1 teaspoon
- Black pepper: 1 teaspoon
- Neutral flavoured oil: 2 tablespoons
- Onion, 1-inch chunks: 1 whole
- Garlic, peeled and smashed: 4 cloves
- Balsamic vinegar: 2 tablespoons
- Tomato paste: 3 tablespoons
- Plain, all-purpose flour: 2 tablespoons
- Red wine: 2 cups
- Beef broth: 2 cups
- Water: 1 cup
- Bay leaf: 1
- Dried thyme: 1/2 teaspoon
- Carrot, 1-inch pieces: 1 whole
- Potato, 1-inch cubes: 2 whole
- Fresh mushrooms, halved: 300 grams
- Frozen corn, thawed: 100 grams
- Frozen peas, thawed: 100 grams
- Preheat oven to 325°F / 165°C.
- Pat beef dry and season with salt and pepper. In a large oven-proof pan, heat 1 tablespoon oil over medium-high heat. Brown the meat in batches, adding 1 tablespoon more oil to the pan for each batch. To sear the meat properly, do not crowd the pan and let the meat develop a nice brown crust before turning over. Transfer meat to a plate and set aside.
- Add onions, garlic and balsamic vinegar; cook, stirring with a spoon and scraping the brown bits from the bottom of the pan. Add tomato paste and beef with its juices back to the pan and sprinkle with the flour. Stir until the flour is dissolved. Add wine, beef broth, water, bay leaf, thyme and bring to a boil. Cover the pan with a lid, transfer to the oven and braise for 2 hours.
- Remove pan from oven and add the carrots, potatoes, mushrooms, corn and peas. Cover and place back in oven for about 1 hour more.
- Remove bay leaf from the stew, then taste the stew and adjust seasoning, if necessary.
- Serve the stew warm.