A hearty stew is perfect comfort food for Fall. This one pays homage to Julia Child’s legendary boeuf bourguignon, stealing her trick of flavoring a wine-rich beef stew with bacon drippings, but adding generous chunks of carrot, potato and butternut squash. Serve with a side of crusty fresh bread. And make sure to drink some of the wine.
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon cracked black pepper
- 2 pounds boneless beef chuck, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks
- 2 strips bacon, cut crosswise into 1/4-inch strips
- Canola oil
- 2 medium onions, cut into 1/2-inch wedges
- 4 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 5 cups reduced-sodium chicken broth
- 2 cups less-sodium beef broth
- 1 1/2 cups dry red wine
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 tablespoon snipped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 pound potatoes, cut into 2-inch chunks
- 1 pound butternut squash; peeled, seeded and cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks
- 4 carrots, cut into 1-inch chunks
- 2 stalks celery, sliced into 1/2-inch thick
- 1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley
- In a large plastic bag, combine flour, salt and pepper. Add beef; shake to coat evenly. In a Dutch oven or large heavy pot, cook and stir bacon over medium-high heat until crisp. Transfer to paper towels with a slotted spoon. Add enough oil to bacon drippings to equal 2 tablespoons. Add half the beef to pot, shaking off any excess flour. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned. Remove beef with a slotted spoon. Repeat with remaining beef.
- If pot is dry, add 1 tablespoon of oil. Add onions; cook and stir for about 4 minutes or until starting to brown. Stir in garlic; cook for 1 minute. Stir in tomato paste. Return beef, bacon and any remaining flour to pot. Stir to combine. Add chicken and beef broth, wine, bay leaves, thyme and paprika. Bring to a boil; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 1 1/2 hours or until meat is tender, stirring occasionally.
- Add potatoes, squash, carrots and celery. Return to boiling; reduce heat. Simmer, covered, for 15 minutes. Remove lid and simmer about 15 minutes more or until vegetables are tender and liquid is desired consistency. Remove bay leaves. Stir in parsley.