Main Dish

Boeuf Bourguignon over Swiss-Style Creamy Polenta

Balletto Vineyards

5700 Occidental Road
Santa Rosa, CA 95401

  • RECIPE YEAR: 2017
  • RECIPE BY: Roger Praplan, La Gare Restaurant
  • YIELD: Serves 8
  • PAIRS WELL WITH: Balletto Vineyards Syrah

This classic recipe is warm comfort food that pairs beautifully with Balletto Vineyards Zinfandel or Syrah. It's especially delicious on a cold winter evening. All Balletto wines are estate grown and bottled to be enjoyed with delicious recipes created by Roger Praplan at La Gare Restaurant in Santa Rosa.

Boeuf Bourguignon

  • 3 pounds beef, cut into cubes
  • 1 yellow onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 carrot, coarsely chopped
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 bouquet garni
  • 2 1/2 quarts red wine
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 to 3 ounces all-purpose flour
  • Olive oil as needed
  • 3 cups brown sauce (espagnole)
  • 6 ounces pearl onions, peeled
  • 2 pounds button mushrooms
  • 6 ounces bacon, diced
To prepare the boeuf Bourguignon, in a large bowl, combine the beef, yellow onion, carrot, garlic, bouquet garni, wine and a dash of salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate for 24 hours. 

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Remove the beef from the marinade, reserving the onion, carrot, garlic, bouquet garni and wine.

Sprinkle the beef with the flour. In a Dutch oven or other large pot over medium-high heat, warm some olive oil. Add the beef and sear until browned on all sides. Transfer to a plate. Add the reserved onion and carrot to the pot and cook, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes. Add the reserved wine and cook, stirring to scrape up any browned bits. Add the beef, bouquet garni, garlic and brown sauce and bring to a boil. Transfer the pot to the oven and cook until the beef is tender, about 1 1/2 hours. 

Meanwhile, in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm some olive oil. Add the pearl onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until just tender. Transfer to a bowl. Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender. Transfer to the bowl with the onions. Add the bacon to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, until crisp. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate. 

When the beef is done, remove it from the sauce and set aside. Strain the sauce, skimming off the fat, and simmer on the stove top until the desired consistency is reached. Adjust the seasoning with salt and pepper and return the beef to the sauce. Add the pearl onions, mushrooms and bacon. 

Swiss-Style Creamy Polenta

  • 4 cups chicken or vegetable stock, plus more as needed
  • 2 cups milk
  • 3/4 cup unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon saffron
  • 1 cup medium-grind polenta
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
To prepare the polenta, in a large saucepan, combine the stock, milk, butter and saffron and bring to a boil over high heat. Sprinkle the polenta into the boiling milk mixture and whisk to combine. Return the mixture to a boil, reduce the heat and cook, stirring constantly, until the polenta is creamy, about 1 hour, adding more stock if the polenta is too dry. 

Once the proper consistency is reached, you can leave the polenta in the pan and brush it with some olive oil. If you prepared the polenta ahead of time, it can be refrigerated and then pan-fried in olive oil just before serving.


  • Chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley for garnish
To serve, transfer the polenta to individual bowls and ladle the boeuf Bourguignon on top. Garnish with parsley and serve.

Balletto Vineyards

5700 Occidental Road
Santa Rosa, CA 95401