Friday, May 20, 2011

The List Maker's Beef Bourguignon

In The List Maker, Catherine pulls out of a horrific year by making a meal in her new surroundings. In her previous life, as she calls it, she was known for her cooking skills. She makes a special meal for someone very special: Beef Bourguignon. This is a man pleasing dish.

Beef Bourguignon
6 servings

6 small beef filets, bacon discarded.
salt and fresh ground pepper
1/2 package smoked bacon, 5-6 slices
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 1/2 cups dry red wine
2 cups beef broth
1 Tbs. tomato paste
1 tsp. dried thyme
1 large onion, chopped
10 carrots cleaned and cut into 1" thick slices
3 Tbs. butter
2 Tbs. flour
1 cup sliced mushrooms

Salt and pepper the filets. Discard the bacon wrapped around them. Saute in hot oil 2-3 minutes on each side. They will be rare in the middle. Remove filets and cook bacon in the same skillet. Remove bacon and drain all but a couple of tablespoons of the grease. Cook garlic in oil for thirty seconds.

Pour in wine and cook on high for a minute, scraping the bottom of the pan to bring up all those little browned bits. Add beef broth, tomato paste, thyme, 1 tsp. salt and 1/2 tsp. papper. Bring to boil, then turn down heat to medium and let it cook for 7 or 8 minutes. Add onions and carrots. Simmer until the sauce is reduced and vegetables are cooked, about 20 minutes.

Mash 2 Tbs. softened butter and flour into a paste. Whisk it into the sauce and simmer 3 minutes to thicken.

In a separate pan saute the mushrooms in 1 Tbs. butter and 1 Tbs. olive oil. Cook until they are browned and tender.

Add the filet and mushrooms to the pan with the vegetables and sauce. Cover and heat on low for 5-10 minutes. Do not overcook it or the beef will become tough. Season and serve.