I have the COZIEST dinner for you guys today!!
This cranberry beef bourguignon is basically the best thing to hit my dinner table all month. It’s perfection with a side of buttery mashed potatoes, and I honestly just can’t think of a better December dinner.
Like classic beef bourguignon, this is meal is hearty, warming and the perfect stew for serving a crowd. I’ve had the idea to include cranberries for a while now, so I’m excited to finally bring the recipe to life on the site today! If you’re thinking cranberries and beef is a weird combo, think again, it’s actually the perfect pairing. The tart cranberries go really well with the beefy flavors in this dish and are balanced by the sweet red wine…not to mention, they add the perfect festive touch, which you all know I LOVE!
This time of year always has me thinking about hearty recipes that can serve a crowd and be served up along side things like pasta, potatoes, rice and bread…basically any and all carbs. It’s bitter cold, snowing and the family is all around, or soon will be, so to me, that means plenty of cozy comfort food. My entire family, cousins and all, will be arriving the 17th for Christmas, but my parents house is somehow already full. As I mentioned on Saturday, my brother Brendan and his girlfriend Lyndsie got into town on Thursday and they brought along a couple of friends for Dew Tour. We kind of sort of got dumped on with snow the last few days and it’s definitely very wintry and Christmassy around here…love it!
Bren and Lynsdie will be in town through New Years, and I’m sure there will be many more stopping as Christmas nears. Meaning having plenty of food around is a must. Luckily I’m in the middle of photographing all the recipes for the cookbook, so there’s been no shortage of food.
Anyway, let’s chat about this pretty little dinner I have here for you guys. If you’ve ever had beef bourguignon than you know it’s a truly a mouth-watering meal. It’s saucy, full of flavor (thanks to an entire bottle of wine – yes and entire bottle), and the beef is incredibly tender with the cranberries adding the perfect tart bite. As you can see, I served mine over a bed of mashed potatoes, but this would be equally great with egg noodles, or even served over garlic bead like Ina does it.
SIDE NOTE: I am mildly obsessed with all things Ina Garten right now. She makes the most delish food and it all feels so perfect for this time of year. I mean, she does everything from pastries, to cookies, to stews to salads <– all the BEST foods.
OKok, so let’s talk about the whole bottle of wine thing. I know, I know, it seems like so much wine, but you guys trust me, it works, and most of the alcohol burns off during cooking. The wine is really the flavor enhancer it here, it creates a sweet yet savory sauce and makes for the most perfectly tender beef. Not to mention, the sweetness balances out the tart cranberries. Be sure to use a dry red wine that you would enjoy drinking yourself, I used a Pinot Noir. All that said, I totally understand that some of you prefer not to cook with alcohol. If that’s that case, use an equal amount of beef broth in place of the wine. Or if you just wish to use a little less wine, try using one to two cups wine and then the rest beef broth. Either way, this dish will be delicious, but I personally love the flavor the wine adds.
Typically the night all of my family arrives for Christmas, I make a bunch of classic style and white lasagnas, but this year I’m thinking of switching things up and making this slightly fancier dish. I know it’s something everyone will love. Beef for the brothers, wine for the girls, and mashed potatoes for all…cause I mean who doesn’t love those?!?
Question: what are some favorite recipes you like to serve your holiday guests? I would love some ideas, as I’ll be cooking for a crowd for the next three weeks straight!
Cranberry Beef Bourguignon.
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 6 slices thick cut bacon chopped
- 2 1/2 pounds chuck beef cut into 1-inch cubes
- kosher salt and pepper
- 2 small sweet onions thinly sliced
- 6 inch carrots cut into 1 pieces
- 2 cloves garlic chopped
- 1/2 cup cognac or brandy see note
- 1 cups bottle dry red wine such as Pinot Noir (see note), 750ml, about 3
- 2 cups beef broth plus more as needed
- 1 tablespoon tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
- 2 leaves bay
- 2 cups fresh cranberries
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 3 tablespoons flour
- 16 ounces cremini mushrooms sliced
Preheat the oven to 250 degrees F.
Heat the olive oil in a large dutch oven over medium high heat. Add the bacon and cook until the fat renders and the bacon is crisp, about 5 minutes. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and place on a large plate.
Dry the beef with paper towels and season with salt and pepper. Now add the beef to the dutch oven and sear in batches until the beef is browned all over, about 3-5 minutes. Transfer the beef to the plate with the bacon. Set Aside.
To the dutch oven with the drippings, add the onions and season with salt and pepper. Cook until soft and translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the carrots and garlic and cook 30 seconds to 1 minute, then add the cognac and raise the heat to high. Cook until reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Next, add the meat and all the juice on the plate back to the dutch oven. Add the wine, beef broth, tomato paste, thyme, and bay leaves. Bring to a simmer over high heat. Remove from the heat and stir in 1 cup of cranberries. Cover with a tight fighting lid and transfer the pot to the oven. Cook for 2 hours or until the meat is tender is shreds easily with a fork.
Remove the pot from the oven and place over medium heat on the stove. Combine the 2 tablespoons butter and the flour until a smooth paste forms. Stir the paste into the stew. Add the remaining 1 cup cranberries and cook until the stew thickens just slightly.
Meanwhile, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter in a large skillet over high heat. Add the mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Cook until the mushrooms are just browned and caramelized, about 5 minutes. Stir the mushrooms into the stew and cook another 10 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Serve over [mashed potatoes | https://www.halfbakedharvest.com/crockpot-three-cheese-mashed-potatoes/], egg noodles or crusty bread.
ps. Happy Monday! Only one more full week of work until Christmas!