What happened to spring?  It’s starting to feel a lot like winter again… On a cold night when people have dragged themselves out, braving the elements to get to your house, this is a welcome reward.  Comfort food that warms the cockles.  Oh, and extremely easy to make!  You need a bottle of wine for the recipe, and if possible stick to the same type of wine you used in the recipe, to serve with it.  Fleur du Cap is a really good accompaniment.  These tasting notes can help you appreciate the wine even more.

fleur du cap, south african wine, beef stew, boeuf bourguignon, red wine

The longer you cook this the better it is, so if you plan ahead you can really serve up the most delicious, tender stew that will melt in your mouth.  I serve this with mashed potatoes, green beans and crusty farm bread to mop up any sauce.

Time: prep time – 20 minutes, cooking time 2-4 hours.

Serves 6


  • 1 kilo of good stewing beefbeef stew, boeuf bourguignon, red wine, fleur du cap, cabernet sauvignon, shallots, south african wine
  • 1 bottle of cabernet sauvignon
  • Black (and red and green) peppercorns
  • A few bay leaves
  • A bag of shallots (12), halve the larger ones
  • 4 cloves of garlic, cut in half
  • 1 red chili, slicedbeef stew, boeuf bourguignon, red wine, fleur du cap, cabernet sauvignon, shallots, south african wine
  • A pack of lardons (or thick smokey rashers diced)
  • 6 carrots, sliced
  • 1 litre of good beef or veal stock
  • A punnet of button mushrooms, left whole if they are small
  • Salt
  • Serve with mashed potatoes and green beans or peas.


The night before…

Pour a bottle of cab sav over the meat, add peppercorns, and a couple of bay leaves, place in a cool place to marinate over night.

The afternoon before…

Peel the shallots and garlic.  Chop the chili, and slice the carrots.

Heat a large non-stick saucepan and then add a couple of glugs of olive oil.  Add the shallots, garlic, herbs, chili and lardons.  Stir.

Remove the beef from the marinade with a slotted spoon and add to the saucepan when the bacon is cooked.  Add a couple of tablespoons of plain flour and stir well, browning the meat.  Once the flour is integrated add the marinade, the beef or veal stock and the carrots.

Pop the lid on and bring to the boil and then turn the heat way down.  (At this stage you could transfer the stew into a casserole dish and pop in the oven – either method works).

Allow to cook for as long as you can, checking every now and then to make sure it’s not drying out.

Half an hour before serving add the mushrooms and continue cooking. 

Serve in heated bowls with creamy mash, green beans and a nice glass of Fleur du Cap Cab Sav.