4 pounds beef chuck, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1 1/2-in. pieces
4 strips hardwood-smoked bacon, chopped
2 large onions, peeled and cut into 1/2-in. wedges
About 1 tsp. salt
1/4 cup flour
1 tablespoon smoked paprika (see Notes)
1 teaspoon chipotle chile powder
2 bottles (750 ml. each) dry red wine
2 pounds russet or Yukon Gold potatoes, peeled and cut into large pieces
1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1/4- by 2-in. sticks
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup minced chives
How to Make It
Heat a heavy, large casserole or Dutch oven (not nonstick) over medium-high heat. Add 1 tbsp. oil. When hot, add 1/5 to 1/4 of the beef. The first piece should sizzle when it hits the pot; if it doesn't, remove it and wait for the oil to get hotter. The pieces should not touch—you want plenty of room so the juices will evaporate quickly and the meat can brown. Cook until well browned and a bit crusted, about 5 minutes each side, adjusting heat so meat sizzles but does not burn. They're ready to turn when they release from the pot easily. Transfer meat to a bowl and repeat with remaining meat and oil, for a total of 4 or 5 batches. This takes about an hour when done properly.
Preheat oven to 350°. Add bacon to pot and cook until fat renders and bacon starts to brown. Transfer bacon to bowl with beef. Add onions to pot and stir in 1 tsp. salt. Cook, stirring, until onions begin to soften, about 2 minutes. Transfer onions to bowl with beef. Add flour to pot and cook, stirring, until it starts to turn golden and smells faintly of piecrust, about 2 minutes. Add smoked paprika and chipotle powder and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 seconds.
Add wine and increase heat to high. Scrape up any browned bits from bottom of pot. Add reserved beef, bacon, and onions. Bring mixture to a boil. Cover and bake until meat is tender, about 1 1/2 hours.
Return pot to stove. Add potatoes and bring to a boil. Add carrots and bring back to a boil. Adjust heat to maintain a simmer. Cook, uncovered, until vegetables are tender, 30 minutes. Stir in butter and add salt to taste. Serve hot, garnished with blue cheese, pepper, and chives.
Note: Nutrition analysis is per 1 1/2-cup serving.
I am cooking this right now, and it smells wonderful. Has anyone else had their oven burst open with flames? SCARY!!! It happened at the 30 min mark, so I decided it was done with that phase. Besides, baking at 350 for an hour and a half seems excessive, maybe 300, next time. It was my first time cooking with a whole bottle of wine( i am single, so 1/2 batch) and I went with a dry red(Columbia Valley Chardon), but next time I boil it awhile longer before baking. I give it a 2 because it could have killed my cat, or singed my eyebrows, or worse!
We love beef bourguignon, and we love blue cheese, but this recipe showed me that they shouldn't necessarily co-habitate.
While a little heat and a little smoke were tasty twists to dish, the blue cheese in this recipe amounts to nothing more than gilding the lily. It's really very good without, and overwhelmed with. I will definitely make this again, but without the cheese, which masks some very beautiful flavors.
The flavor of this stew was phenomenal! I loved the Smoked Paprika and the Chili Powder - truly a deep flavor. But, I found that the stew meat did not get tender as it cooked! All my stews done on the stove turn out "melt in your mouth". This did not. I may try it again and do it on the stove rather than the oven. I used high quality meat, so I think it must be the cooking technique.
This is a wonderful recipe. It is more time consuming than most stews, but well worth the effort. The blue cheese and chives are a must. I did decide to use 1 bottle wine and substituted broth for the second bottle...delicious! I am serving it tonight with crunchy french bread and a simple green salad!
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