Monday, December 24, 2012

Gram's Beef Burgundy


My Gram didn't really cook. I think she lived off of Grape Nuts and Yogurt, with a Friday night take out pizza carrying her through the weekend each week. But when she did cook, it was special and soooo good. It's not shocking that her one fantastic culinary masterpiece was a one pot wonder: Beef Burgundy.

Yankee Gram's Beef Burgundy
2 lbs Chuck Stew Beef
2 Tbsp Butter
4 medium onions, coarsely chopped (yes, I said 4 onions)
10 carrots (peeled and chopped)
2 cups mushrooms, or you could use canned mushrooms or none if you're not into mushrooms
salt and pepper to taste
1 cup burgundy wine (the cheaper the better).
1 cup beef broth
4 sprigs parsley
2 sprigs celery leaves (these are the leaves on the top of the celery stalk..this is one of the secrets)!
2 bay leaves
2 cloves fresh garlic
3 Tbsp flour (optional).

How To:
-Melt Butter in large stock pot, stew pot or dutch oven.
-Brown beef and remove from pot (this maybe is crazy, but I put the beef in the flipped upside-down lid of the pot and set it on the counter (why dirty another bowl?, you'll be using the lid while it all cooks).
-Add all vegetables to the pot and saute until tender and brown.
-Remove vegetables from the pot, (I put them back on the cutting board).
-Return browned beef to the bottom of the pot, then arrange the vegetables over the meat, covering it.
-Season with salt and pepper (a dash, a pinch, whatever you prefer), add wine, broth, parlsey, celery leaves,  bay leaves, and garlic.
-Reduce heat to LOW and simmer covered for 2-8 hours.
-DO NOT STIR while on the stove top.  Every now and then, pick up the pot and shimmy it around to make sure it isn't sticking to the bottom of the pot, but do not stir it.  Just gently shake pot occasionally.
-Remove garlic cloves and bay leaves just before serving.
- Optional, but I prefer it this way: Before serving, if you would like to thicken the stew 'gravy' , remove about 1/2 cup of juice from the pot and put in a small bowl.  Add anywhere from 1 to 3 TBSP flour to the juice, stirring to combine. Add this mixture to your stew pot, gently stirring it in right before serving.
-Serve in a nice warm bowl, on a bed of mashed potatoes (I love to serve mine on garlic mashed potatoes) or on a bed of egg noodles.

It's the perfect comfort food on a cold winter's day and I've been making it on Christmas Day for about 15 years now.


  1. When/if you do, buy good quality stew beef. It really makes a difference. Better quality will be extremely tender when you are ready to serve. I made a mistake of buying some cheap meat at Walmart and it was quite tough. A week later, I remade the beef burgundy again, this time with better meat from Reasors and it was heavenly. The only difference was the quality of the meat. :)