I've never been a fan of beef dishes, but there are a few I would eat. My mom is a bit strange in her eating habits. She eats no poultry or fish, but loves beef and shellfish. Because of this, there was a lot of ground beef recipes growing up, and occasionally she'd treat us with beef stew, beef bourguignon, or rouladen. I vividly remember picking out the potatoes and other vegetables in those dishes, and leaving the meat behind. So for me, these dishes can still be made often with the meat either left out, or beans used instead.
A few months ago, I dreamed up cannelini beans bourguignon, which was delicious! This time though, I wanted the dish to really focus on the vegetables, and leave out all meat. I used whole cremini mushrooms to get a meaty quality, and kept the remaining vegetables true to standard recipes. I think the addition of some peas or haricots verts would be wonderful though, and might try it again. Also, I've served this over noodles, mashed potatoes, but polenta would also be a great foundation. Basically, you can't go wrong when concocting a dish with a red-wine based sauce! And the best part - traditional beef bourguignon takes hours to prepare. This dish took me about 30 minutes, start to finish!
1 tsp. EVOO
1 small yellow onion
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 lb. small cremini mushrooms, cleaned and stemmed
1 lb. carrots, peeled and sliced in 1/4" rounds
2 oz. tomato paste
2 tbsp. Brandy
1 cup dry red wine (I used pinot noir)
1 cup vegetable stock
3-4 thyme sprigs
1 tsp. fresh minced rosemary
Salt and fresh ground black pepper
Parsley, chopped, for garnish
1 cup frozen pearl onions
6 oz. whole wheat pasta, or prepared polenta, mashed potatoes, etc.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, salt, add pasta, cook to al dente.
Drain, set aside.
Heat a soup pot or dutch oven over medium heat.
Add EVOO, grate in onion, stir to combine.
Add garlic, mushrooms and carrots, continue to stir and cook for 5-10 minutes, until mushrooms have softened and let out most of their water.
Add tomato paste, brandy and wine, stir well.
Bring to a simmer, reduce wine by half, add stock, rosemary and thyme.
Bring to a simmer, season with salt and pepper, cover and cook for 15 minutes, until carrots are tender.
Add frozen onions, heat through.
Taste, adjust seasonings, remove thyme stems, serve over noodles.
Sprinkle with parsley.
*Note: This recipe is vegan, as written, but a sprinkle of parmesan cheese or grated gruyere is a fantastic addition.