Asheville shopping for Beef Bourguignon is not as straightforward as one might initially assume. In my last blog on this topic I mentioned some of the variations employed as each person making this dish seeks their own interpretation.
In our Asheville Bed and Breakfast we always seek to strike a good balance between good food, what are the fresh seasonal offerings available and try and reduce just nuisance calories if possible. It is in that spirit that I will shop.
Most, but not all of the recipes for this dish call for bacon but many of the reviews and updates by folks in the know about this recipe state clearly that the bacon issue was to tenderize the tougher cuts of meat that used to be common in the store. Basically Beef Bourguignon, though now interpreted as haute cuisine, originated as peasant fare.
I have chosen to ditch the bacon avoiding the extra fat and nitrites and use marbled chuck roast.
I also mentioned Cognac as either a yea or a nay. This is what one of the recipes relates.
"Add the Cognac, stand back, and ignite with a match to burn off the alcohol." As you might remember this is said to add "depth" to the flavor.
I weighed this carefully, truly I did. I weighed the dimension of depth with my potential kitchen fire, working the nice fellows of the Asheville Fire Department to death and also the alarm I might see on the faces of my guests here At Cumberland Falls Bed and Breakfast Inn and ...Well, let's just say the depth of flavor potential didn't win.
I am not going to opt for the seriously expensive wine but rather locate a good bottle in the hopes that my wine and beef will marry well living happily ever after but not break the bank for the wedding.
For the mushrooms I am definitely going to lose the white buttons variety in favor of the far more flavorful bella.
Moderation will guide me in the garlic amounts as it does here at our Asheville NC Bed and Breakfast. It will for sure be fresh and it will be dead in the middle between the largest and smallest amounts suggested.
You see, while I and my husband really enjoy garlic, this dinner is for friends hence I will seek the midline to enhance everyone's enjoyment.
Gotta go seize the day on this shopping venture. May the force be with me.
Patti and Gary Wiles, Innkeepers