Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Simply Homecooked - Julia Child's Boeuf Bourguignon

A few months ago, a friend asked me if I knew which media could she look into in running an ad campaign for a cooking related movie... I got curious and asked her which movie that was... she asked me if I knew who Julia Child was... obviously I gave her a queried reaction because for the life of me, I've never heard of this name... little did I know that she's a legend in the culinary world *smile* how ignorant of me.
It was during my recent trip to Taiwan that I got acquainted with Julia Child (well sorta)...I was pleasantly surprised that the movie Julie & Julia was screened over the in flight entertainment system... I watched with great interest because the story of Julie was about a lady who blogged (hmmm just like me *grin*) and the story of Julia was about a lady who loved to cook (hmmm just like me too *grin*)... Needless to say, the entire movie inspired me tremendously that I can't wait to try the said famous Boeuf Bourguignon myself!

For one, I am really a lover of beef stew and secondly, the movie made the dish looked so tantalizing that I was really curious how it would taste like.
Not long after I was back from my trip, I was searching to get my hands on Julia Child's cookbook "Mastering the Art of French Cooking. Was thrilled when I saw it on the shelves of the Popular Bookstore... without a second thought (didn't even check the price tag) I grabbed the book and was on my way to make the Julia Child's Boeuf Bourguignon.

The thing about this cookbook is that Julia Child gave everything she knew about cooking to her readers and I felt that I was holding the BEST cookbook I've ever had! The book is filled with details of how-to, what-to and all the wonderful information about cooking that even a novice in the kitchen could become a chef (literally)!

Hubby was surprised that this book filled completely with words (except for some sketches on techniques of handling the ingredients) and no fancy photos of any food at all could actually teach me how to cook. Well, what can I say... the Boeuf Bourguignon that came out of my oven today was the BEST dish I've ever prepared!!! (even hubby agreed)... I can actually cook French food hah!
Beef (boeuf), is THE most important ingredient. Julia Child explained in detail on how to choose the best part & cut of the beef to make this dish... you've got to read it to find out... nonetheless, go to any supermarket that sells prime beef you'll be able to get yourself some really good meat!
Bacon is also another key ingredient of this dish.
Butter! Julia Child emphasized the usage of butter - LOTS of it! *grin*
Beef stock in cans or beef stock cubes worked beautifully for this dish.
It's french food so it's Julia Child's recommendation to use french wine... but I am a SAHM with limited resources, so I settled for a South African, full-bodied, red instead.
Portabello mushrooms is a must-have for me. Though the recipe didn't indicate that we must use portabello mushrooms :)
I have to confess that it was a lot of work preparing this dish but it was sure enjoyable. The aroma that filled the air was simply indescribable. I've never cooked something that smelt this GREAT, seriously! If only you could be here to experience it first-hand... *smile*

I couldn't wait for the beef to stew up to 3 hours, so at the 2nd hour of stewing, I stole a piece for my tasting pleasure. It was..... HEAVENLY!!!

The red wine has been completely absorbed by the beef and the combination of all the ingredients just made this dish simply DELICIOUS beyond description! At that moment, I was thinking, how could anyone ever thought of such a wonderful dish like this... it's amazing!
Julia Child suggested that this dish could be used as a main course in a buffet dinner or it could also be paired with boiled potatoes or rice. Today, I decided that I wanted to combine broccoli and mash potatoes to the Boeuf Bourguignon.

The kids lapped up every drop of it from their bowls this evening and so did hubby and I. Hubby even had a second helping... isn't it wonderful to be able to cook french food with such ease... now I've got to hunt out the next recipe to try...

Here's the recipe if you wish to try making some french food *wink*.

Bon Appetit my friends!


Dawn said...

You should go watch the movie Julie & Julia. Its about Julia Child! You would be inspired to cook the whole book!! Go watch. Its a recent show in the movies. Might be out in DVD!!! I love the show! Think I shall ask my hubby to buy that book for my Christmas prezzie! hehe..thanks for sharing! cant wait to cook the boeuf bourguignon!

Mama Bliss said...

Hi Dawn, yes dear, I've watched the movie twice on my trip to & fro Taiwan/S'pore that's why I was inspired to make this dish :)

It's really a great movie!!!

Angie said...

It looks so yummy!!! But I'm just curious: since the dish needs to be cooked with wine, is it suitable for a breastfeeding mummy to consume coz I'm still bfding... And also, how old must a child be in order to be able to eat it?

mamabliss said...

Hi Angie, thanks so much for your kind compliments :)

To play safe, I'd suggest not to try this dish if you are concern about the alcohol content even though the alcohol of the red wine is said to evaporate during the high heating process of cooking.

My youngest is 2yrs+ now and there was no strong reaction after eating this dish... :)

Karen said...

Wow!! Look delicious and certainly nicely presented! I love beef and mutton recipes...the aroma is simply irresistable!

Anonymous said...

May i know what cut did you buy for the beef?

thank you.


Anonymous said...

May i know what cut of the beef did you use?


Mama Bliss said...

Hi Momo,

I got the beef ready cut & packed for stews from the super market.

Hope that answers your question. :)