We did it. Mama and I attempted this seemingly overwhelming recipe and not only did we actually finish it, but it was pretty much incredible. It was mostly Mama’s doing. 🙂 Now, the culinary queen herself, Julia Child, has a ridiculously complicated recipe to follow, so we turned to another mutual favorite, Ina Garten, for a simpler, less time-consuming recipe. We sort of combined the two recipes, with great success.
Here we are, cooking up the bacon: real bacon, not the pre-made, quick microwave stuff, but real, fat-rendering bacon.
Next comes the meat, the gorgeous red stewing meat that smells divine as it browns and will slowly stew until it falls apart in your mouth.
My brother and father were completely willing to eat just this:
Add the onions and the carrots. We couldn’t find pearl onions so we used regular and it was still amazing and they still caramelized beautifully. We used baby carrots instead of taking all that time with real, large carrots, and it was still amazing also.
Now the meats are returned to the pot to begin melding with the veggies.
Now everybody gets to relax in a decadent bath of beef stock, tomato paste, thyme, garlic, and a good, and I mean really, really good bottle of dry red wine. It slowly bubbles together and reduces and thickens for a freakishly long time and it smells like nothing you’ve ever smelled before.
Serve the finished French stew over noodles or mashed potatoes (I mean real, you peeled ’em, chopped ’em, boiled ’em, then whipped ’em with milk or sour cream and butter potatoes, not flakes-in-a-box mashed potatoes), some great artisan bread, and a glass of that full-bodied red wine. You’ve never eaten anything with so much depth of flavor.
Yeah……I started eating before I got around to taking a picture.