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Julia Child's Beef Bourguignon

Bev Cooks Recipe by
(7 reviews)
Julia Child's Beef Bourguignon
  • Prep Time 45 min
  • Total Time 6 hr 0 min
  • Servings 4
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Julia Child's Beef Bourguignon

It might take all day, but you won't BELIEVE YOUR MOUTH.


slices bacon, cut into lardons
3 1/2
tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
pounds stewing beef, cut into 2-inch chunks
large carrot, sliced
large white onion, sliced
pinch coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
tablespoons flour
cups red wine, like a chianti
2 1/2
to 3 1/2 cups beef stock
tablespoon tomato paste
cloves smashed garlic
teaspoon thyme
crumbled bay leaf
to 24 small pearl onions
3 1/2
tablespoon butter
herb bouquet (4 sprigs parsley, 2 sprigs thyme, 1 bay leaf)
pound fresh white mushrooms, quartered


  • 1 Simmer bacon lardons in 4 cups water for 10 minutes. Drain and pat dry.
  • 2 Preheat oven to 450°F.
  • 3 In a large dutch oven, sauté bacon in 1 tablespoon of oil for about 3 minutes, until it starts to lightly brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  • 4 Dry the beef in paper towels for better browning. In batches, sear the beef on all sides in the Dutch oven. Set aside with the bacon.
  • 5 Back in the pot, add the sliced carrots and onions; sauté in fat until browned, about 3 minutes. If there's any excess fat, drain.
  • 6 Add the bacon and beef back to the pot. Season with 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt and 1/4 teaspoon ground pepper. Toss. Sprinkle with flour and toss once more. Place in the center of the oven for 4 minutes.
  • 7 Remove pot from oven; toss beef and place back in the oven for 4 more minutes.
  • 8 Remove the pot from the oven and reduce the heat to 325°F.
  • 9 To the pot add the wine and stock. The liquid should barely cover the meat and vegetables. Add the tomato paste, garlic and thyme. Bring to a light simmer on the stove, then cover and simmer in the lower part of the oven for 3 to 4 hours, or until the meat is easily pierced.
  • 10 In the last hour of cooking, bring 1 1/2 tablespoons butter and 2 teaspoons oil to a medium heat in a sauté pan. Add the pearl onions and toss around in the fat until they've browned, 10 minutes. Then stir in 1/2 cup beef stock, a small pinch of salt and pepper and the herb bouquet. Reduce the heat to low and simmer the onions for about 40 minutes, until the liquid has evaporated and the onions are tender.
  • 11 Remove the onions and set aside. Discard the herb bouquet and wipe out the skillet. Add the remaining butter and oil and bring to a medium heat.
  • 12 Add the mushrooms and cook for about 5 minutes, shaking the pan to coat with the butter.
  • 13 Place a colander over a large pot. Drain the beef stew through the colander and into the pot. Place the pot with the sauce over a medium heat and simmer for about 5 minutes, skimming any fat on top. Pour the beef and vegetables back into the dutch oven. Add the pearl onions and mushrooms to the pot. Pour the sauce over the beef mix and simmer an additional 3 to 5 minutes.
  • 14 Garnish with parsley and serve with potatoes, rice or noodles.
See Step By Step

Step By Step  

How to Make Julia Child's Beef Bourguignon

As prepared by Bev Cooks,

It's Julia Child's recipe. I mean, hello.

I've wanted to make her beef bourguignon for yeaaaars now. I've had the book forever. I've seen the movie 3 bakamajillion times now. What's taken me so long? Man, I don't even have an answer.

All I know is, Aaron and I spent a good six hours making this UNBELIEVABLE stew a couple of weekends ago, and I haven't been able to get it out of my dreams. Or my car.

Wait, never mind.

So, here it is! While the stew simmers, pour yourself a few glasses of red wine, and watch Julie and Julia. And eat cheese. And crackers. But save your appetite for stew OR I WILL TURN THIS CAR AROUND.

Tighten your apron strings. This one is a doozie.

The recipe with measurements and temperatures is linked at the bottom of this post.

Simmering bacon in water
Cut up some bacon and simmer it in water for about 10 minutes. I'd never done this before and was fascinated. Then just drain and dry it.
Sautéing the bacon
Then sauté the bacon in some oil until it's lightly browned; just a few minutes.
Browning the meat
Now, this is important. Pat your meat dry! Or else it won't brown. You probably already knew that, but I remember learning it a few years and being all whaaaaat. Then place the 2-inch cubes of stewing meat in the fat and sear until they've browned all over. You may have to do this in batches.
Sautéing carrots and onions

Back in the pot, sauté some carrots and onions!
Then add the beef and bacon back to the pot. Season with a little salt and pepper and sprinkle with flour. Toss it all up and place it in the oven for a little bit to get that good crust on the meat. Oh, JULIA AND YOUR FLOUR.
Ready for the oven
Okay, then pour the wine and stock in, along with tomato paste, garlic and some herbs. Stick her in the oven for 3 to 4 hours. I didn't photograph what the liquid looked like in the pot because that's boring. And it was so heavy and I was a scaredy cat.
Browning pearl onions
While it's cooking, work on your onions and mushrooms. You'll just brown the pearl onions in some butter with some beef stock and herbs. This takes a good while though. Slow cooking, baby.
Browning mushrooms
Then you'll set the onions aside and get your mushrooms all browned in some more butter. Ain't nothing wrong with that.
Stew in pot
Hey! It's our stew, after about 4 hours. OMG.
Stew, strained and simmered
Then after some straining and simmering, you put it all back in the pot together for one last dance. I mean, just look at that.
Beef Bourguignon, ready to eat, vertical photo
Garnish it with parsley and serve with potatoes. Or pasta! Or rice! I'll chill.
Beef Bourguignon, ready to eat
I honestly can't begin to describe to you what is going to happen to your body when you inhale this.
Beef Bourguignon, ready to eat, close up photo
Just . . . just go.
Let's get married, Julia.

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Nutrition Information 
No nutrition information available for this recipe
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