French Red Wine Stew

Active Time

  • 1 hour 45 Minutes

Total Time

  • 4 hour
  • Yield

Serves: 8

Learn how to make this classic French red wine stew by Chef Ludo Lefebvre.


  • 1/2 cup plus 3 tablespoons grape seed oil or another neutral oil, divided
  • 2 pounds 3 ounces beef for stew, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
  • 1 bouquet garni (thyme sprigs, bay leaf, and parsley sprigs wrapped in a leek leaf and tied with kitchen twine)
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed (skins removed if desired)
  • 7 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2 quarts dry Burgundy red wine
  • 2 1/4 cups fond de veau (alternatively, reduce 1 quart 2 ounces low-sodium beef stock by half)
  • Kosher salt, to taste
  • Ground white pepper, to taste
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 10 1/2 ounces pearl onions
  • 10 1/2 ounces bacon, sliced crosswise
  • 8 3/4 ounces button mushrooms, peeled and sliced
  • Steamed potatoes or cooked pasta for serving


How to Make It

  • Step 1
  • Heat 1/2 cup grapeseed oil in a large enameled cast-iron Dutch oven over medium-high. Add beef in batches, cooking until browned on all sides. Return beef to pan. Reduce heat to medium and add bouquet garni and garlic cloves. Let simmer for a few minutes. Stir in flour.

        Step 2

  • Add wine and fond de veau. Season with salt and white pepper. Skim fat from the surface. Reduce heat to medium-low to maintain a simmer. Cover and cook for 3 hours, stirring and skimming occasionally.

       Step 3

  • Melt butter in a medium skillet over medium. Stir in 1/2 cup water and sugar. Add onions, and cook, stirring occasionally, until caramelized about 10 minutes. Keep warm.

       Step 4

  • Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons grape seed oil in a second medium skillet over medium. Add bacon and mushrooms, and cook, stirring often, until bacon fat is rendered and mushrooms are lightly browned about 10 minutes. Discard fat; add bacon and mushrooms to onions.

      Step 5

  • When beef is cooked through and very tender, remove and discard the bouquet garni. Stir onions, bacon, and mushrooms into the beef mixture, and simmer for a few minutes. Season with additional salt and pepper to taste. Serve very hot with steamed potatoes or pasta.