Courage at Twilight: In Which Roger Finds the Courage to Cook Julia Child’s Delectable Boeuf Bourguignon

Alone with Mom and Dad on Thanksgiving, I determined to make a nice meal (that was not a turkey), and found my courage to try Julia Child’s recipe for Boeuf Bourguignon (beef stewed in red wine).  The recipe had intimidated me for a long time, because of the expensive ingredients (quality cut of beef, bottle of Bordeaux) and the many involved steps that have to come together.  Boil and brown the bacon sticks.  Brown the beef cubes.  Sauté the sliced carrots and onions.  Pour in the red wine and broth.  Simmer in the oven for three hours while sautéing small whole onions and quartered mushrooms to add later.  “Do not crowd the mushrooms,” Julia charged.  The last step was to boil the wine and broth down to a thick gravy to pour over the platter of beef, bacon, onions, carrots, and mushrooms.  To my wonder and delight, the meal was a smashing succulent success.  I felt quite proud of myself as the three of us chewed with delighted mmmms and ahhhhs.  How disappointing to get full so fast!  I will not prepare this dish often, but the four-hour cook time was worth the happy result as we quietly concluded our Thanksgiving Day with our meal of French Boeuf Bourguignon.

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