French Fridays with Dorie: Beef (cheek) daube with carrots & elbow macaroni

This week’s French Fridays with Dorie (beef cheef daube with carrots and elbow macaroni, p 246) was served to some friends who came over for a “blog food” dinner as I am wont to do every now and then… A “blog food dinner” for those of you not in the know is when you look at your blog editorial calendar and make a whole bunch of dishes in advance on a weekend when you have some spare time, then serve them – whether they go together or not – to guests. My friends are used to this (my neighbours now peek over the fence when I am out the back taking photos and offer to do tastings for me!) and I am generally able to cobble together a meal that has some semblance of beginning, middle and end..

This daube is truly delicious – beef bourguignon-y in flavour with the surprising twist of the macaroni (which always just reminds me of Kraft Dinner/ Mac n’ Cheese no matter what it’s in!). I used stewing beef because the weekend I made it, I simply didn’t have the time to source beef cheeks, though I know I can get them here in Toronto. The carrots might seem like an odd addition too but somehow, this seemingly cobbled-together dish really works.

The night I served it, with everything mixed in, the macaroni turned a little purple, as I expected (from the wine) which did not affect the taste at all but looked a little odd. Hence why I chose to save the leftovers in separate containers so that wouldn’t happen for 1. the photos and 2. Mr Neil. I didn’t think that purple pasta would go down so well with him!  I’d definitely make this again but don’t know I would use the macaroni. I’d much prefer a piece of baguette to sop up the lovely sauce from the stew.  This was, nonetheless, an unexpected tasty hit!

French Fridays with Dorie participants do not publish the recipes on our blogs (though this week you can find a version of the recipe online here) rather, we prefer if you purchase Around My French Table for yourselves (trust me, you definitely want this book!) which you can do here on Amazon or Amazon Canada. Or for free worldwide shipping, buy from The Book Depository. Go on, treat yourself then join us here!


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40 Responses to French Fridays with Dorie: Beef (cheek) daube with carrots & elbow macaroni

  1. Cindy November 30, 2012 at 06:09 #

    Looks so good, Mardi. I do a dish, One Pot Beef, I found at Candian Living, adapting it to suit our needs. My hubby simply loves scooby doo pasta, so that is what originally had caught my eye. I too think I would have to use Stew Beef to try this out, however though I am certain there is plenty of cheeky beef beasts here on the Bruce Peninsula to be found 🙂

  2. Liz November 30, 2012 at 06:17 #

    I LOVE the idea of a food blog dinner! Especially to whip out 4 FFwD recipes in one fell swoop! Your daube looks picture perfect as always. Happy weekend, Mardi!

  3. Cher November 30, 2012 at 08:14 #

    This WAS good… Your carrots are so orange!
    When I am in my organized state (and when schedules are posted far enough in advance), we have those types of dinners. It’s great to knock off so much at one time – although it does make for some wacky meal plans 🙂

  4. Mr. Neil November 30, 2012 at 09:51 #

    Tasty, if a little odd in appearance.

    Funny how just some elbow macaroni can throw one, isn’t it? I suggested flat egg noodles – to which mademoiselle said “well then I might as well just make boeuf bourguignon”! 🙂

    As pretty as the carrots are, Mr. Neil recommends subbing pearl onions instead.

    I wasn’t invited to the Blog Dinner, so cannot recall the wine. I gave Mardi a Chilean Carmenere for the cooking. That’s a perfectly good match then of course; I think when I had it, I had a nice Spanish red from Ribera del Duero.

  5. Eileen November 30, 2012 at 11:39 #

    I give you a round of applause for managing to take a pretty picture of this food. Mine was delicious, but not so great looking. I love the idea of a blog dinner. I may give that a try one of these days.

  6. Sara November 30, 2012 at 11:48 #

    Beautiful dish! I admit, the macaroni was not very attractive after soaking in the sauce, so it’s nice that you preserved all those crisp, distinct colors. Lovely job, Mardi!

  7. Alex November 30, 2012 at 11:52 #

    I agree wtih you about the maccaroni – there is something about it, that just does not appeal to me! But I love the idea of the beef!

  8. Diane Balch November 30, 2012 at 15:48 #

    The food blog party is genius and I’m sure your friends appreciate… though you must be exhausted after all that cooking. Yours looks so homey and comforting. really lovely.

  9. Rose November 30, 2012 at 17:03 #

    I’ve done that before, squeezed a bunch of FFwD recipes together which may or may not actually go together. Sometimes the schedule demands it. And, like you, my taste testers rarely seem to mind.

  10. Alice November 30, 2012 at 18:37 #

    I was wondering why your macaroni didnt have the tell-tale sign of the sauce! 🙂 Well it looks like it was a great hit in your house, purple mac or not!

  11. Carie November 30, 2012 at 20:31 #

    I almost served my pasta on the side, too, but it was really good cooked in with the stew. It soaked up all the yummy flavors. Yours does look beautiful!

  12. Betsy November 30, 2012 at 21:24 #

    How great to share the dishes with an enthusiastic and appreciative audience. I loved the flavors of the sauce in this recipe, though I’m not usually a beef stew fan. I kind of liked the elbows. My husband pronounced them “fun”. Have a great weekend!

  13. Trevor November 30, 2012 at 23:36 #

    I love reading other bloggers descriptions of things like “food blog dinners” and realize that I am not alone in this world. I’ve done some very weird dinners but everyone is good sport despite the lack of congruity. I even have a neighbor who begs. This looks great! Interesting to see this with the sauceless mac!

    • Mr. Neil December 2, 2012 at 12:28 #

      Trevor – we have SEVERAL. 🙂

    • Mardi (eat. live. travel. write.) December 20, 2012 at 09:06 #

      The sauce sadly went to the bottom of the bowl – needed a bit of thickness…

  14. Mary Hirsch December 1, 2012 at 10:30 #

    I have never heard of a “food blog dinner”, Mardi, but it is definitely a party I would like to have. My problem is that I am not structured enough (and, I think I am pretty damn organized) to put together several food blogging recipes at one time. I am curious now to know what you served with this? But…. that would defeat the purpose of getting several dishes made at once, wouldn’t it? I thought the elbow macaroni was a twist but not a clever one. I didn’t particularly like the color of the macaroni (mine was brown not purple) either. But, you’re right, if we’d have gone flat egg noodles and pearl onions as Mr. Neil suggested, we’d have just had boeuf bourguignon. So, there you go. Still tasty, however.

  15. Ann Mah December 1, 2012 at 11:18 #

    Ah, a blog dinner — what a great idea! Your daube looks delicious, Mardi. I’m on the hunt for beef cheeks myself. Where do you usually find them?

  16. Maggie December 2, 2012 at 10:35 #

    I was wondering how you kept your pasta looking so pristine! 🙂 Smart lady! Your pictures are lovely as always!

  17. Brooks December 2, 2012 at 22:33 #

    Mardi, this is a nice take on the Dorie dish. Beef cheeks or chuck…either way it has to be good. I too, love the idea of a blogger’s dinner. How lovely it would be to dine with others who get the process. Cheers from NorCal!

    • Mardi (eat. live. travel. write.) December 20, 2012 at 09:04 #

      Well actually it’s dining with people who have no idea why they are eating a random assortment of dishes – a “blog dinner” as opposed to a “blogger dinner”. Still very fun and practical!

  18. Colette @ JFF! December 3, 2012 at 20:30 #

    Ok, this is very interesting.

  19. Guyla December 5, 2012 at 15:07 #

    I often have ‘food blog dinners’ myself. Only for me its usually a catch up not a cooking in advance! We loved this one!

  20. Sarah, Maison Cupcake December 7, 2012 at 12:26 #

    When you go to the Camargue you’ll be able to have some authentic boeuf daube, they serve it with rice and black olives. I can tell you just where to go!

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