Sunday, January 24, 2010

Recipe for Beef Bourguignon and a Successful Dinner Party

Brian and I had a dinner party on Saturday night with some of my best girlfriends and their boyfriends and I made a simple version of beef bourguignon that I think is a must-share! It is just one of those dishes that is perfect for a dinner party and really impressive to serve, mainly because of how delicious it is.  I called my mom earlier in the week and asked her if she could set aside a few hours on Saturday to teach me how to make the dish she had mastered after all her years of cooking.

Before I get into the recipe for the beef, I have listed a few elements that from my few but fun experiences in hosting are essential for successful and enjoyable night :)

1) for music: PANDORA for your i-phone or i-touch - it's an app you can download, amazing!
2) wine, plenty of it, and champagne to toast
3) a dish that can be prepared before-hand so that you're not working in the kitchen and can actually entertain your guests
4) lots of candles to set a nice atmosphere 
For the Beef Bourguignon...


  • 18 pearl onions - peeled
  • 3 large carrots, sliced 
  • 2 tablespoons cooking oil for frying the beef
  • flour for flouring the beef
  • 2 pounds of stew meat, cut into bite size pieces
  • 1 bottle of red wine
  • 1/8 teaspoon thyme
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 pound mushrooms, sliced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 cup of diced tomatoes (from a can is fine)
  • salt and pepper
  • fresh parsley for garnishing 
  • 1 lb of fresh pappardelle (ribbon-like pasta)

  1. cut up all your vegetables so that they are ready to add when needed
  2. pat dry your beef with a paper towel for more even browning
  3. flour your beef chunks and start browning all four sides of each piece in a frying pan with the cooking oil
  4. add the browned beef to a dutch oven
  5. add the minced garlic, mushrooms, onions, and tomatoes to the beef
  6. add an entire bottle of red wine
  7. sprinkle in the herbs and salt and pepper
    You let this come to a boil for about 20 minutes, then turn down your oven and let it simmer on low for up to 4 or 5 hours, right before you serve the dish. My oven is really old and blows out when it's on low so I had to continuously turn it on, and off, and on, and off, etc... :)
    Right before you are ready to serve, cook the pasta, drain and add the butter to it to give all the noodles a nice coating. Add to your dishes, top off with your sauce, and sprinkle on your parsley!!

    not my photo but sort of what it looked like!


    1. Thanks for this recipe! I'm sure yours was wonderful. I've been planning to make this since I watched Julie & Julia!
      Congrats on a successful partay!

    2. That sounds amazing. It is so special to go to a friends house for a nice dinner. So much better then a restaurant. I think I'll try thst soon.

    3. Lizzy - when are you going to cook this amazing meal for moi! xo, Debby