Kate's Cuisine

Nov 05 2011

Julia Child’s Boeuf Bourguignon: Review

What can you say about this signature dish from the greatest cook I personally believe has ever walked the planet? I dare not critique this recipe; I will however, tell you a few things I did differently (only out of necessity, I swear, Julia) and where I got the recipe from – so you can see it in beloved Mrs. Child’s own words.

Julia’s original recipe calls for bacon rind as well as bacon lardons – and my bacon didn’t come with rind on it. Because of that, I just browned it the way I always do. I was also unaware that Julia’s bourguignon recipe called for pearl onions (for shame!) and was so disappointed that I didn’t have any on hand – they’re my favourite part of any stew and I can imagine they’d be just to die for in this recipe! Instead, I chopped green onions into long 3″ slices, the white parts only, and braised those the way Julia indicates in her recipe.

Everything else I tried to keep pretty much the same as she says and I can tell you, the meat truly does melt in your mouth. It’s so incredibly tender and flavourful it more than makes up for the fact that you’ve just spent the day cooking it. Julia also says in Mastering the Art of French Cooking that the onions and mushrooms can be made days ahead of time, and just added when needed. And of course, you can prepare most of it and keep it in the fridge until you’re ready to just bring it to a simmer and serve to guests. And Julia actually says that this gives the flavours a chance to truly mingle and develop.

Make her signature dish, feel Julia cheering you on as you go, and know that as Julie Powell  (played by actress Amy Adams) says, “Everything’s gonna be all right.”

To see how Julia Child wrote it out herself, you can find her Boeuf Bourguignon recipe here.

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