Real Recipes From Real Home Cooks ®

french essentials: daube de boeuf (stew of beef)

Recipe by
Andy Anderson !
Wichita, KS

This is my variation of a classic Daube de Boeuf Provencal. I have made several changes to the original recipe, such as replacing things like the pork fat, and salted pork with good organic bacon, and a bit of unsalted butter. You can add veggies, like carrots and taters; however, since I was serving this over homemade wide egg noodles, I did not include them; you can if you so choose. Takes a bit of time, but sooo worth it. So, you ready… Let’s get into the kitchen.

yield 6 - 7
prep time 12 Hr 20 Min
cook time 4 Hr
method Bake

Ingredients For french essentials: daube de boeuf (stew of beef)

  • 1 bottle
    dry red wine, plus more for drinking :-)
  • 1 Tbsp
    olive oil, extra-virgin variety
  • 2 tsp
    dried thyme
  • 1/8 tsp
    salt, kosher variety, or to taste
  • 1 lg
    dried bay leaf
  • 2 lb
    chuck or round of beef, cut into 2-inch cubes
  • grapeseed oil, or other non-flavored variety, as needed
  • 6 slice
    bacon, divided
  • 1/2 md
    yellow onion peeled and sliced into half moons
  • 3 clove
    baked garlic
  • 1/8 tsp
    salt, kosher variety
  • 1/8 tsp
    black pepper, freshly ground
  • 1 Tbsp
    sweet butter, unsalted
  • the reserved marinade
  • 1 lg
    carrot, peeled and sliced on the bias, 1 inch (2.5cm) in thickness
  • 4 oz
    black niçoise pitted/ sliced olives, 1 small can, drained
  • 14 oz
    diced tomatoes, 1 can, with juice
  • 3 - 4 sm
    golden or red potatoes, quartered

How To Make french essentials: daube de boeuf (stew of beef)

  • 1
    This recipe will serve about six, unless you are REALLY hungry. If you do not need that much you can always cut the ingredients in half. Some recipes do not do well when you start cutting it down, but with this one… No worries. A second option would be to freeze part of it for later.
  • 2
    You will need a non-reactive bowl (stainless steel, glass, ceramic) to hold the marinade and beef. Plus, you will need an ovenproof container with a lid for the baking (ceramic, Dutch oven). Note: The choice of the ovenproof container is important. If you look at the pictures of the container that I used, you can see it is pretty much full, you do not want to use something that is too big, or the meat will dry out. So, choose one that when all the ingredients are inside, it is at least three quarters full.
  • 3
    Baked Garlic I love what baking does to garlic… it mellows the flavor and creates an awesome ingredient that enhances so many diverse dishes. I use it so much in catering that I usually bake 15 or more heads of garlic at a time, and then save them for when needed. If you do not wish to use baked garlic, you can use regular minced cloves, but cut the amount in half. Here is the recipe that I use… it is easy/peasy:
  • 4
    The Wine You need one standard bottle, 25.5 ounces or 750ml. You will want a good dry red wine for this recipe, such as a Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Pinot Noir, Malbec… There are others (to be sure), but this is a good start. Since the wine imparts its flavor into the beef, choose a wine that you enjoy drinking. In the immortal words of Julia Child: If it is not good enough to drink, it is not fit for cooking. I used a Cabernet Sauvignon, cost about $10.00. FYI: If wine is not your thing (pity that), you can sub an equal amount of good beef stock, not broth, and maybe a teaspoon or two of white vinegar.
  • 5
    The Beef Due to the long cook time, pretty much any type of beef will do quite nicely. This is the type of recipe that makes just about any cut taste super yummy. So, do not feel like you need to break the bank on this one.
  • 6
    Gather your ingredients (mise en place).
  • 7
  • 8
    Whisk all the marinade ingredient together in a non-reactive bowl and reserve.
  • 9
  • 10
    Trim any excess fat off the beef, and cube.
  • 11
    You do not have to be precise about cutting up the beef, as a matter of fact, varying the size of the cubes will make the dish look a bit rustic.
  • 12
    Place 3 strips of bacon into a pan of boiling water and blanch for about 5 minutes, reserve the other three strips for later.
  • 13
    When cool, cut into about 1-inch (2.5cm) wide pieces.
  • 14
    Sprinkle the salt and pepper onto the baked garlic, then crush into a paste with the side of a large knife (like a kitchen knife or santoku).
  • 15
    Take the cut bacon and mix it with the garlic.
  • 16
    Using a small blade, like a paring knife, cut a slit in the middle of each one of the beef cubes, and stuff them with a piece of the bacon.
  • 17
    Add them to the reserved marinade, cover, then place into the fridge for about 12 hours.
  • 18
    About the time the beef is ready, add a bit of grapeseed oil (or other non-flavored variety) to a skillet over medium heat, add the sliced onions, and cook until they soften and just begin to color, about 3 – 5 minutes.
  • 19
    Place the 3 strips of reserved bacon into the bottom of an ovenproof container and cover with the onions.
  • 20
    Place a rack in the bottom position and preheat the oven to 325f (165c).
  • 21
    Using the same pan that you cooked the onions in, drizzle a bit more oil, then add some of the marinated beef cubes.
  • 22
    Sear on two sides, about 2 – 3 minutes per side.
  • 23
    You want the beef to sear, not steam, so do the searing in small batches, leaving plenty of space between the cubes.
  • 24
    As one batch finishes, place them into the ovenproof container over the onions and bacon.
  • 25
    Here is mine with all the beef cubes.
  • 26
    Strain the reserved marinade, add the butter to the skillet you cooked the onions and beef. Add the marinade, and stir until it just begins to simmer, then take off the heat.
  • 27
    Pour into the container with the beef, cover, and place into the preheated oven for 3 – 4 hours.
  • 28
    After about 2.5 hours, check on the beef, and about every 15 minutes thereafter. When it is well browned and fall-apart fork tender, it is ready.
  • 29
  • So yummy
    Serve over a pile of garlic mash taters, nice flat egg noodles, or whatever you choose. Enjoy.
  • Stud Muffin
    Keep the faith, and keep cooking.

Categories & Tags for French Essentials: Daube de Boeuf (Stew of Beef):