Mom gave this recipe a 5 star rating by asking that I not misplace the recipe! The ultimate compliment? “I need a slice of baguette. This sauce tastes just like Grandma’s!” Why is she surprised? Her Grandma and her own Maman taught me how to prepare a selection of my favorite French country cuisine recipes.
4 lbs. beef chuck roast. Prime is superior but Choice meat also results in a great tasting dish
1/4 to 1/3 lbs ventrèche or pancetta
10 oz. mushrooms, sliced
2 large onions, sliced
4 medium carrots, peeled and diced
3 cloves of fresh garlic
1 cup of beef stock
2 to 3 cups of dry red wine
1 tablespoon fresh thyme
3 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
Salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste
Slice the onions and mushrooms into thick slices.
Wash, peel the carrots then dice.
Crush the cloves of garlic then set all the vegetables aside.
Add the pancetta, ventrèche or even bits of lean salt pork to a Dutch oven over medium heat.
Sauté until lightly browned then add the veggies. Stir until well combined.
Sauté over medium heat until the vegetables are softened but not burned.
With a slotted spoon, remove the bacon/vegetable mixture from the pan. There should not be much rendered fat but if there is more than you want left in the pan, blot it out with a couple paper towels before proceeding with the recipe.
Season the meat with salt and pepper then add the pieces to the pan. Brown well on both sides.
Repeat with all pieces of meat depending on the cut of meat your purchased. I cut each large chuck roast into thirds.
Add a couple carrots to the bottom of the slow cooker to support the pieces of meat.
Transfer the meat to the slow cooker, placing the pieces and evenly level across the bottom of the cooler.
Top the meat with the sautéed vegetables then with the sliced mushrooms.
Spread them evenly over the meat.
Use the beef broth to de-glaze the pan where you browned the meat, then pour over the vegetables.
Pour the wine evenly over the vegetables.
Place the lid on the slow cooker and set to HIGH for 4 hours. It can easily be left to cook for another hour (I actually let it go through the entire “keep warm” cycle) but check the level of liquid from time to time.
Add a little broth if needed.
Serve over rice, mashed potatoes, egg noodles or straight up with buttered bread.
Keywords: beef, boeuf bourguinon, French Cuisine, slow cooker, crockpot