Saturday, March 19, 2011

Beef Carbonnade

Last week, I wrote about our family celebrating Lent for the first time this year.  I honestly thought it would be a hard thing for us to do --- this not eating out at all!  Today, I am here to tell you that I've actually been pleasantly surprised!  If you know me in person, you'd know that cooking is not my favourite thing to do... I cook because my family needs to eat! :-) 

The kids and I have been cooking together {some nights} and having a lot of fun doing it.  For me, personally, I've managed to surprise myself by trying out a few new recipes... and it's only been one week and a bit since Lent started.  These new recipes have been a hit so far... they are definitely going to become part of our family's regular menu!  I am actually looking forward to trying out more new recipes in the coming weeks.

Maybe, just maybe, our family will be able to send a few more under-privileged Filipino children to school... once I get the hang of this thing called making-dinner-each-and-every-night! ;-)

So... to help me keep track of these new recipes, I am going to post them here on my blog under a new label called "cooking".  This first one is called Beef Carbonnade... a couple more will be posted shortly!
Beef Carbonnade
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 7 hours
Makes: 8 servings

*This Belgian beef and onion stew braised with beer reheats well, so it's no-fuss party fare.  Spoon it over egg noodles, mashed russet or sweet potatoes, polenta, barley or rice.

5 large onions
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
3 lbs stewing beef cubes (or braising beef ribs!)
3 tbsp vegetable oil
4 thick slices of bacon, chopped
1 tsp crumbled dried thyme
1/2 tsp each crumbled dried basil, oregano and sage
1 bay leaf
1 bottle lager beer (or more, enough to almost cover beef)
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley

Peel and cut onions in half lengthwise; slice thinly crosswise to make 8 cups.  Set aside.

In large bowl, combine flour, salt and pepper.  One-third at a time, toss beef in flour mixture to coat; reserve any remaining flour mixture.

In large skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat; brown beef, in batches and adding more oil if necessary.  Transfer beef to slow cooker.

Add more oil to skillet enough to coat pan; fry bacon over medium heat just until starting to crisp.

Add onions, thyme, basil, oregano, sage, bay leaf and any remaining flour mixture; cook, stirring, until onions are softened, about 8 minutes.  Scrape into slow cooker.

Add beer to skillet; bring to boil, scrapping up brown bits from bottom of pan.  Scrape into slow cooker along with mustard.  Stir to combine.

Cover and cook on low until slightly thickened and beef is tender, 7 to 8 hours.  Discard bay leaf.  Serve sprinkled with parsley.
This one was a huge hit with my boy... he's my gauge because he's my picky eater!  Oh, also... during the last hour in the slow cooker, I added chopped up potatoes and carrots!  And, a bonus... this recipe had enough left-overs for another meal!  Bon appetit!!!

Unwrapping more of His love in this world.
Act justly.  Love mercy.  Walk humbly with God!


  1. Nice recipe... I will give it a go this week.

    Isn't amazing how change can bring such growth and expansion to our lives. Enjoy the change. Savor it!

  2. Thank you for your encouragement, Angelina! I am thankful for the growth that this change has brought. :-)