Cooking Quest: Beef Bourguignon aka Beef Burgandy

Monday, June 05, 2017

Ever since tasting the Beef Bourguignon of Duck and Buvette in Shangri-La Mall years ago, I have so been looking for a recipe to do at home.  Most recipes I found online were very tedious, they require a lot of cooking steps.  I'm sure the best recipe has to be Julia Child's - but reading through the ingredients and procedure, it was tiring.  But I guess, the labor of love would be worth it.

I finally came across a simplified version that involves a slow cooker.  So I bought all the ingredients and did my first attempt.  Since the recipe used a slow cooker, I assumed that I could just put all the ingredients together and let the slow cooker do it's magic.  And so I waited patiently for hours, checking every so often if the meat has tenderized.  To my surprise, after 3 hours - the meat was still tough.  It thought to myself, why not add 3 more hours to the cooking time, I mean - I already waited for 3, what is three more?!  And so I did, and waited patiently.  The kitchen smelled oh so wonderful and I was really excited.  On the 6 hour mark, I proudly took out the cover, forked a piece and tried it.  It was so rubbery!  The sauce was too thin and it tasted so different from what I had imagined it out.  I decided, why not add another 3 hours to the cooking time.

At the end of 9 hours in the slow cooker, my attempt on Beef Bourguignon was a complete FAIL.  The meat was still not tender, the sauce was still thin and it had a different taste, like a sour wine or something.  I tried to save it, but it couldn't be salvaged.  I was so sad to see the ingredients go to waste.  I even thought to have my dog try the dish but Jacob was not interested on those pieces of meat.  It was a major FAIL.  This was yearssss ago.  So, after this incident, I never tried again.  I was too scared that the ingredients might go to waste.  Every so often, I'd look up at Julia Child's recipe thinking that someday, when I have the courage again - I will be brave and make one.

Last year, I bought the Assumption Legacy Cookbook from Joey (one of my FAVORITE food bloggers of all time).  As I was browsing through the wonderful pages, I saw a recipe for Beef Bourguignon.  I was so happy because the recipe was very simple and easy to follow.  I vowed that when I found the cut of beef that I liked, I would try this recipe out.

Months ago, during a supermarket trip I finally found the beef cut I was looking for.  Well, I guess I wasn't really looking for it, it just so happened that I grabbed that beef pack thinking of cooking something else.  I tried to cook that meat in a different way only to discover it's not *bagay* for what I was thinking to cook.  Then a light bulb moment came - I can use that meat for Beef Bourguignon!  The next few days were spent buying the rest of the ingredients.  I thought to use the wine I bought from the S&R sale because the recipe said to use a wine that you'd drink.  I was slowly buying the ingredients, I guess I was still a bit scared to really dive into making the Beef Bourguignon, haha!

But one afternoon, I finally decided to make it.  I followed the recipe off the Assumption Legacy cookbook, but instead of using just a pan on a stove, I used my trusted Breville MultiChef (slowcooker)

I marinated the beef overnight with the red wine.  I read online that this doesn't do anything to the beef, but I trusted the recipe and I wanted to see what the effect was.  I also remember that wine has the ability to make meats tender.  So I trusted the recipe.

The next afternoon, I started making the Beef Bourguignon.  I followed the recipe to a T at first.  After I poured everything in my Breville slow cooker, I said a short prayer - that this time, to make it at least edible.  So, I put my slow cooker on high, and a few minutes and when I saw bubbles from boiling, I switched it to low and patiently waited for 3-4 hours.  Since I started slow cooking at 7pm, I had to wait and battle my sleepiness.  I waited and prayed, I check on the glass cover every so often.

When it was 10pm, I decided to check it again and thought to try the sauce.  I was so happy with the consistency of the sauce, but I felt that it needed more garlic, and so I added about 5 pounded garlic cloves (I love garlic kasi).  I also added some dried thyme.  I forked a piece of beef and felt that it could still use a bit more time in the slow cooker.  So after mixing it a bit, I covered the pot and waited again.

I was really sleepy, I could feel my eyelids getting heavier by the minute.  I was watching the movie Somethings Gotta Give so as not to fall asleep, but I could't help it anymore.  So by 12midnight, I went down, while walking down the stairs, the aroma was wonderful - I was scared and excited.  I opened the pot and there it was - the Beef Bourguignon.  It smelled really wonderful, really really wonderful.  I was suddenly awake!  Hahaha..

First, I tried the sauce - it was really goooood!  Then I forked the beef - the moment of truth!  Hahaha - I was so happy that it was tender.  I then put it on a small plate to see if the meat was really tender, I was about to use a knife to cut it, but it broke down while I forked it.  I couldn't believe it, it was definitely softer compared to when I cut the meat earlier (on the 3 hour mark).  I got another piece to try, and it was the same.

I felt so happy, it was like I achieved something that I tried so hard to make!  I felt that my labor paid off (since it was a really warm night when I started cooking) and it was a success.  I wanted to share the good news to my Panget, but he was already asleep - the whole house was already asleep!  Hahaha..

The next morning I brought some for my mom and brother to try.  My mom approved and so did my brother.  Yehey!  My Panget had this for dinner and said it was good!  He usually says *Ok lang* but this time, he said *Masarap*, so it's masarap talaga!  I was so happy.  Super duper happy that even the kids liked it.  Woohoooo!!

I finally did it!  I finally made a version of Beef Bourguignon.  I wouldn't have had the courage to make it without the help of the Assumption Legacy Cookbook.  Thank you Joey and friends for coming up with this.  Thank you for sharing your recipes with us for us to try at home.  In case you're interested to get the cookbook, see the details below.  Enjoy!

So happy to have conquered my fear!  Hahaha...

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