Classics · Comfort food · French · Meat · Stew

Julia Child’s Boeuf Bourguignon

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This past weekend I wanted to inaugurate my new caste iron dutch oven and my very own copy of “Mastering the Art of French Cooking”  I followed the recipe exactly so here is the link to it.  By far the best beef stew I have ever had or made !  Enjoy !

http://knopfdoubleday.com/marketing/cooking/BoeufBourguignon.pdf

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Towel dry the cubes of beef, otherwise they will never brown.

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sauté the vegetables.

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Add the wine and bay leaf and let is cook away in the oven !

Dinner · Meat · Sides

Pork Chops with Blackberry Balsamic Sauce and Roasted Sweet Potatoes

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My mom had never had sweet potatoes and that needed to be changed.  This is more of a fall menu, perfect on a crisp October evening, but since my mom was visiting, August just had to do.  This meal would pair well with a nice red or even with some pumpkin beer.   I hope you all enjoy this meal–I know my mom loved it !

Blackberry Balsamic Sauce:

1 pint of fresh blackberries
1 Tbsp water
1 Tbsp good quality aged balsamic vinegar
1 sprig fresh rosemary
optional – about 2/3 tsp cornstarch in 1 Tbsp water

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Pork chops:

Sprinkle with salt pepper and Chinese five spice and grill till cooked through.

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Sweet Potatoes:

2 pounds sweet potatoes, about 3 large ones

1/4 cup olive or other vegetable oil

1-2 Tbsp brown sugar

1 Tbsp salt

1-2 Tbsp spice or spice combination of your choice: chipotle powder.

Preheat oven to 450°F. (For more crispiness, preheat your oven to 500°F.)

Peel the sweet potatoes and cut off the ends. Cut the potatoes in half lengthwise and then, if they are very long, in half crosswise. Cut each piece into cubes.

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Put the sweet potatoes into a large bowl and add the oil. Mix well to combine. Sprinkle with salt, sugar and spices of your choice. Use your hands to mix well, so all pieces are coated with oil and spices.

Spread the sweet potatoes out in a single layer on a baking sheet; the oil they are coated with should keep them from sticking to the pan. If you are trying to cut fat, reduce the oil to 2 Tbsp and use a non-stick coating on the baking sheet.

Bake for a total of 25 to 30 minutes. After the first 15 minutes, remove the baking sheet from the oven and turn over all of the sweet potato pieces. Return to the oven and bake for another 10-15 minutes, or until they are well browned. Let cool for 5 minutes before serving.

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Dinner · Meat · Stew

Pork and Butternut Squash Stew

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-12F.  Yup ! That has been the weather for the last few days.  Bitter, arctic, bone chilling cold.  The only fix is a piping hot bowl of stew. Stews may sound daunting but they really are not.  Just a few ingredients, a crock pot and a cold weekend afternoon–that really is all you need to make this stew and trust me, it is good for you and it will give your sunday chicken roast a run for its feathers !  So here we go !

Ingredients:

1 lb ground pork

5 cups cubed butternut squash

2 yellow onions, chopped

2 tsp of minced garlic

1, 14 oz can of diced tomatoes

1 chicken stock cube or 1, 14 oz can of chicken stock

1 tbsp of dried sage and rosemary

1/2 tbsp of red pepper flakes

A dash of nutmeg

Salt and pepper to taste

2, Fresh springs of thyme

1 bay leaf

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Method:

In a pan, saute pork with all the spices, herbs (except the thyme and bay leaf) and onions till pork is browned and onions are golden.

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In a crock pot, transfer the pork and onions.  Add the squash, tomatoes, chicken cube and two sprigs of fresh thyme and 1 bay leaf.

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Top the pot with water just to cover everything–you will have to adjust this if you are using chicken stock.

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Cook on high for 4.5 hrs, leaving the cover off for the last 1 hr to thicken the stew–make sure to taste the seasonings and stir the stew every now and again.

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Serve hot with rice, cornbread, or some crusty dinner rolls !

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Classics · Comfort food · French · Meat · Stew

Beef Daube Provencal

There are a lot of types of beef stew.  This is by far my favourite.  I love the richness of the wine and the heartiness from the beef and mushrooms.  This is another fall/winter staple in my kitchen, so when the temperature fell below 45F today, I decided that it was a good day to turn on the oven and make stew !

Ingredients:

2 teaspoons olive oil

12 garlic cloves, crushed

1 (2-pound) boneless chuck roast, trimmed and cut into 2-inch cubes

1 1/4 teaspoons salt, divided

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, divided

1 cup red wine

2 cups chopped carrot

1 1/2 cups chopped onion

8 oz mushrooms

1/2 cup less-sodium beef broth

1 tablespoon tomato paste

1 teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary

1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme

Dash of ground cloves

1 (14 1/2-ounce) can diced tomatoes

1 bay leaf

Method:

Preheat oven to 300°.

Heat a small Dutch oven over low heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add garlic; cook 5 minutes or until garlic is fragrant, stirring occasionally. Remove garlic with a slotted spoon; set aside. Increase heat to medium-high. Add beef to pan; sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Cook 5 minutes, browning on all sides.

Remove beef from pan. Add wine to pan; bring to a boil, scraping pan to loosen browned bits. Add reserved garlic, beef, remaining 3/4 teaspoon salt, remaining 1/4 teaspoon pepper, mushrooms, carrot, and next 8 ingredients (through bay leaf), and bring to a boil.

Cover and bake at 300° for 3 1/2 hours or until beef is tender.

Serve with buttered egg noodles or crusty bread !

 

Dinner · Meat · Salad

Steak Salad Platter

I did not grow up eating beef.  As a result, I am really shaky about cooking steak and even buying the right cuts of meat.  But I still try.  I think I have nailed down the beef stews, mostly because I get a lot of help from the slow cooking process.  So this past week I took the challenge of cooking steak.  I cheated and bought 1lb of shaved steak (the cut you would use for steak sandwiches) and tried to work with it.  Much to my pleasure it came out really good ! Also, the roasted vegetables made their last appearance in this recipe.  Enjoy !

Marinading the steak:

1 lb of shaved steak

1/8 cup soy sauce

1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce

1Tbsp of thyme (dried or fresh)

a few dashes of garlic powder and black pepper

Use all of the above ingredients and marinade the steak for about 2hrs.  Marinade in a ziploc bag and rub in the marinade into the meat.

While the steak marinades, cut up 1 medium onion and 1lb of mushrooms and saute them till deep brown.

Season with salt and pepper at the very end, this way the water will not come out during the cooking and the mushrooms and onions will get a chance to brown up.

Next in a wide frying pan, fry the steak to desired doneness, I like it well done.  Once the steak is almost done, add the mushrooms and onions and fry together

I like to serve the salad on a big board with the ingredients separately so that you can build it according to your choice.  There is plenty on flavor and juices in the steak and the roasted vegetables so I did not use a dressing but feel free to use you favourite dressing.

Serve warm or at room temperature.  Garlic bread and glass of red wine would make it a complete dinner !