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Monday, 2 March 2015

Don't Say Never Trust A Skinny Cook: Boeuf Bourguignon (No Mushrooms!)

So, the title says no mushrooms but you can add 250g of button mushrooms (according to my mother chestnut mushrooms would be wrong). You're probably also wondering how Boeuf Bourguignon can be healthy, well that is because (again, according to my mother) the only bad bits in it are the flour and red wine! Whilst you don't use much of one you do use a lot of the latter (no prizes for guessing which) and it makes it taste so good. I was sceptical about making this as I don't really like stews but Liam wanted it and I said I'd give a mushroom free recipe a go. I'm glad I did - it was filling and yummy in equal measures. The recipe is based off Olive magazine's Skinny Beef Bourguignon, which apparently only has 281 calories per portion, though I suspect that doesn't include the potatoes they suggest you serve with it.

Obviously, you're probably dubious about making this on a weeknight, and I'm not going to suggest you make it to eat tonight, rather that you make it tonight and eat it tomorrow as the flavour will only get better. It's probably 40 minutes in total of hands on work and it just sits is the oven for a couple of hours, which is where the magic happens and the beef becomes meltingly tender and the flavours meld together in perfect harmony. It might look slightly odd when you take it out of the fridge tomorrow (beef stock tends to do that) but pop in back in the oven and it'll sort itself out.

I served this with boiled new potatoes, but you could add bread or rice or dumplings (not the lovely Asian ones, but the British type, despite it being a French dish!). I'm sure that any of these sides would go well. What do you eat your Boeuf Bourguignon with?

Boeuf Bourguignon Recipe

Serves 4
Oven at 160˚ fan


2 heaped tbsp plain flour, seasoned
400g extra-lean died braising beef
18 peeled shallots
3 carrots, peeled and cut into rounds
4 garlic cloves, crushed
500ml red wine (french would be good, and buy the best wine you can afford i.e. wine you'd drink on it's own)
500ml beef stock
2 sprigs of thyme
2 bay leaves


Toss the beef in the seasoned flour (in a small bowl) and then add to a hot lidded pan with a tablespoon of oil (I sized a size 20 le cruset and it just fit everything at the end) and brown the meat before removing it onto a plate.
Add the peeled shallots, diced carrots and minced garlic to the pan and cook for 5-7 minutes until softening, add a small amount of beef stock if needed to stop things from burning and to lift off the lovely tasting brown bits left over from the meat. (Mushrooms also go in here if you're using them).
Return the beef to the pan and add the red wine, beef stock, thyme and bay leaves. Season.
Place a layer of tin foil over the top of the pan and then add the lid before transferring it to the hot oven to cook for 2 hours.
Return the casserole to the hob and discard the thyme and bay leaves.
Remove the veg and beef with a slotted spoon (place them in a bowl) and reduce the sauce by simmering it on the hob until it has thickened (10 to 15 minutes). Season to taste (Liam wanted lots of seasoning so I let him do this bit!)
Put the meat and veg back into the pan and allow them to reheat for about 5 minutes. 
Allow to cool and refrigerate overnight before popping it back into the oven (with the lid on) and cook until everything is hot through.
Serve with your chosen side.


  1. It looks delicious and reminds me how much I like this dish - on the menu for next week. As Isabel says, congratulations for making food one actually wants to eat.

  2. GorgeousGateaux2 March 2015 at 22:08

    It was tasty (I'm still surprised I liked it so much!) and I'm glad people want to eat it!

  3. We cooked this recipe for a dinner party last night and it was great - melt in the mouth delicious.

  4. GorgeousGateaux15 March 2015 at 18:37

    I'm glad you enjoyed it!


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