Recently, my friend Deb came to stay with me from out of town.
I was a bit nervous about her coming because she’s on a strict gluten-free diet and I wasn’t sure if I knew how to cook for a gluten-free lifestyle.
I did some internet research on the topic, asked a lot of questions and studied labels at the grocery store. I learned a lot. Did you know that soy sauce has gluten? I even had a hard time finding chicken stock without gluten. This was frustrating. I typically make my own stock but I was out of stock. After reading the labels on the boxes and cans in the store, I’ve vowed to never run out of stock again.
With renewed confidence in my new gluten-free knowledge, I tackled Boeuf Bourguinon (sort-of). O.K. I can’t pretend to pull off a gluten-free version of Julia Child’s famous recipe. I made up my own Burgundy Beef recipe inspired by my gluten-free friend … and Julia Child. I call it Deb’s Beef Melange.
I cooked this in a slow cooker so we could go play while it was cooking.
6 Strips Bacon (cut into 1-inch pieces)
3 Pounds Beef Chuck (cut into bite-size cubes)
1 Teaspoon Salt
½ Teaspoon Pepper
¼ Teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1 Teaspoon Smoked Paprika
1 Medium Onion, sliced
1 Large Carrot, peeled & sliced
2 Cloves Garlic, minced
1 Tablespoon Cornstarch
1½ Cups Beef Broth (If you don’t make your own, use Organic. Everything else uses yeast extracts … not O.K. for a g-free lifestyle!)
2 Cups Red Wine
1 Tablespoon Tomato Paste
1 Tablespoon Fresh Thyme, finely chopped
1 Bay Leaf
1 Pound fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 Tablespoon Fresh Parsley, finely chopped
2 Cups Brown Rice
1. Saute’ bacon in a skillet over medium heat until crisp. Remove and set aside on a paper towel-covered tray.
2. Season the beef with salt, pepper, cayenne & paprika. Add beef to same skillet and brown. Remove from skillet and add to the slow-cooker.
3. Saute’ the onion, carrot & garlic in the same skillet. Once veggies are soft, remove from skillet and place in slow cooker.
4. In a small bowl, take 1 tablespoon of beef broth and mix with cornstarch until smooth. Add that with the rest of the beef broth, wine, tomato paste, thyme, bay leaf, mushrooms and cooked bacon to slow cooker. Cook over low heat for 8 – 10 hours, or over high heat for 4 – 6 hours.
5. About 30 or 40 minutes before serving, cook the rice according to package directions.
6. Add the parsley right before serving.
To serve, scoop rice into the bottom of soup bowls and cover with beef melange. I judge my dishes by how much food is left over at the end of the meal. The pot was empty … and I noticed that even my gluten-free friend had seconds. Success!