Friday, March 12, 2010

Birthday Symphony

Mid-week I found myself meandering though the aisles of the Carmel Public Library looking for that perfect cookbook - - that cookbook containing the recipe for my birthday dinner. I held one book and then another…..and another. Finally, my hands rested on the one - Chez Jacques by Jacques Pepin. I thumbed through the book and found it…the recipe!! Beef Stew in Red Wine Sauce (or boeuf bourguignon). Mmm…. heaven!

Although I can make a beef stew in my sleep, this recipe is somewhat different in its approach and therefore, made the perfect recipe to experiment with on my birthday. Flipping through the book, I found a recipe for a tapenade……NOW we’re talking!! I love nothing more than to eat and drink while I cook. The thought of a pungent tapenade on a crisp warm baguette and a glass of red wine just about put me over the edge!

The beef strew recipe called for 2 pounds of flatiron steak - - a luxury for sure! I typically use a chuck roast or stew meat……but Jacques said flatiron and flatiron it will be. I went to Vine and Table to choose a wine to accompany our dinner. Jacques mentioned for this recipe, one should use the SAME wine to cook with so a good, yet inexpensive, red wine was in order (the recipe called for an entire bottle in the stew). I chose the Rosemount Estate Mudgee Hill of Gold Shiraz for its full body and soft aromatics. Actually, this wine has become a staple at my house lately.

I rushed home to get the house in order before The Man arrived. Walking through the door, my house seemed a little chilly. It had been quite the cold week, so I thought nothing of it. I walked over to the thermostat and turned it up a couple of degrees.

Continue reading at the  Vine and Table Wine Blog


braingirl said...

A shiraz?! In beouf Bourguinon! Burgundy is pinot country and the dish is designed for the lighter flavors of a less jammy red. Congrats on your first beef stew with wine! (Next you'll be braising shortribs! Then, coq au vin!) PS to Jacques, Julia Child uses chuck in hers.

Becky P said...

I hear ya!! But Jacques said big bold california red (like a zin), so I compromised with an Australian Shiraz that wasn't quite so jammy....It was yummy, though!! We compared the recipe with Julias and are definitely making hers next! Coq au vin....yummy!!!!