Recent Posts

Painted feature walls: 2 ways

Painted feature walls: 2 ways

In this blog, I show you how to paint two features walls using just paint and masking tape. Version A: Criss Cross feature wall For this version I made small pencil markings on the wall as per the diagram below. I then joined the dots […]

Pattern Hack: Adding a zip and hem cuff to TATB Stella Hoodie

Pattern Hack: Adding a zip and hem cuff to TATB Stella Hoodie

The Stella is the last pattern that I had left to make from Tilly and the buttons “Stretch!” book. I don’t usually wear hoodies unless they had a zip so I decided to add one. The hoody also needed to be a little longer than […]

Boeuf Bourguignon Pie

Boeuf Bourguignon Pie

Originally published on my previous blog – Tashymakesstuff back in 2012

I like to believe that I was the first to come up with the idea of the beef bourguignon pie. I’m sure I wasn’t, but I like to think that I was. I’m also fairly sure that it was my husband’s idea, as he as the one who suggested that beef bourguignon would make a good pie filling.

Beef bourguignon is a dish that I remember well from growing up in France as a child. It was such a tasty dish, rich in flavour. It’s not a cheap dish to make so it was usually saved for special occasions. Still, it was probably one of my favourite dishes. I don’t recall ever having it after moving back to the UK aged 14, but a year in France during my degree reminded me how delicious it was. So, when I returned, I started cooking boeuf bourguignon for my boyfriend-now-husband and he was not disappointed.

At the time I remember doing a quick Google search and not really finding any recipes so I used the Delia recipe that I had previously used and then covered it with pastry. And when I say ‘Delia recipe’, it’s fairly modified. I mean, for one I use an entire bottle of wine. Most recipes don’t, but I do. Most recipes I make do. I like strong flavours. Maybe I have weak tastebuds, but if the dish is named after a French wine, I want the dish to taste of that red wine.

Named after a French wine…?

Yes, Beef Bourguignon (actually Boeuf Bourguignon) is essentially beef in wine from the Bourgogne region of France. In my ‘just graduated from uni so I’m a bit poor’ days I would use any strong bodied wine I could find.
In more recent years I have been using actual Bourgogne wine. It’s not particularly expensive, you can get a decent bottle for under £10.

Ever wondered where the colour Burgundy comes from? Well, it’s from this wine.

It comes from a region is the centre/north east of France, not far from where Dijon mustard comes from.

source: https://www.vins-bourgogne.fr

In France, unlike other areas of the world, wine is generally named after the area it comes from rather than the grape. However, bourguignon wine is usually made from grapes of the Pinot Noir variety. It’s a full-bodied red wine, full of flavour which is why it is a perfect ingredient for this recipe.

Here’s the recipe!


Ingredients:

  • 1kg diced beef
  • Olive oil
  • 1 Onion
  • Flour
  • 1 bottle red wine
  • 3 heaped tbsp flour
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • Thyme
  • Marjoram
  • Salt & Black Pepper
  • 350g shallots
  • 225g bacon
  • 250g mushrooms
  • 1 roll puff pastry



Method:

Place beef in a bowl/pot, sprinkle on about ½ tbsp of dried thyme, 1pinch marjoram, 1 clove chopped garlic, ½ tbsp sea salt. Cover with some good red wine, leave to soak in fridge for 5 hrs.

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This picture was taken in those days that I didn’t specifically use ‘Bourgogne’ wine. It was still very tasty!


Preheat oven to 150C
Sear the meat a few pieces at a time, and transfer to a bowl. Keep juices of marinaded beef. Chop onions during this process.


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Fry the chopped onions. 


Then, return beef to pan. Add 2 tbsp of sieved flour and stir to make sure juices are absorbed. 

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Place left over juices from the marinade in a jug and top up with wine to make 500ml. 

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Gradually add this to the beef & onion mix. Add the 2 chopped garlic cloves, 2 bay leaves and an extra 1tbsp of thyme.

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Transfer to a casserole dish and place in oven for 1hr 30.

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After this, peel and chop shallots into quarters and finely slice bacon,mput the shallots and bacon in a pan on a high heat and heat until cooked (approx 5-10 mins).

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Add the rest of the bottle of wine. 

Cook for an extra 5 mins then add the mushrooms and a pinch of black pepper and cook until the wine is absorbed/evaporated.

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During this time prepare the puff pastry with a rolling pin, pastry should be about ¾ cm thick. 

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Add beef and sauce from the casserole dish to the pan and turn oven up to 200 C. Mix well. Add more wine to liquify or flour to thicken if needed.

Transfer to pie dish. 

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Place puff pastry on top of dish and cut extra pastry leaving a 1-2 cm edge. Use a fork to push the pastry to the edge of the pie dish. Mix egg white and yolk together with a fork in a small bowl/cup. Brush the top of the pie with the egg.

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Place the pie in the oven for approx. 20mins.
Tadaaaaa!!!

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Tilly And The Buttons: Joni dress

Tilly And The Buttons: Joni dress

The neckline of Joni dress is what drew me to buy the latest Tilly And The Buttons (TATB) book, even if I originally assumed it was a top on the cover photo. Despite being the main draw, it wasn’t the first garment I decided to […]

IKEA shoe cabinet makeover

IKEA shoe cabinet makeover

A few years ago I was given an IKEA Sandnes shoe cabinet. I found the style of it very practical. It hides the shoes but also takes very little space.  I liked it until we had done some work to the entrance hall of house. […]

Ikea Hack: DIY Farmhouse table from Ingo + Ivar set

Ikea Hack: DIY Farmhouse table from Ingo + Ivar set

[originally published on an old blog in 2013]

After moving into our new home, there were so many items of furniture to buy. One of these items we needed was a dining table. After seeing some tutorials to make one from scratch on Pinterest using reclaimed wood.  I really wanted to do so myself but really did not have the time or resources to do so.

We looked at other tables but our budget was quite limited, we wanted to sit at least 6 and I really did not want something cheap looking that I’d want to replace in a couple of years.

So after a lot of internet browsing, I found this INGO table at Ikea: http://www.ikea.com/gb/en/catalog/products/14630009/ aswell as the IVAR chairs: http://www.ikea.com/gb/en/catalog/products/68156009/.

Before: IKEA INGO
Before: IKEA IVAR

They are a pretty simple style which meant I could easily put two tables together, and coupled with 8 chairs it came to less than £200.

We have oak furniture and blue and grey colours in the room so I decided to stain the top of the pine table with an oak stain and to paint the legs a light grey. Choosing the grey was a complete ball ache, who would have known there were so many different shades of grey? Anyway I ended up settling on a colour called ‘Fog’ from B&Q’s own range. It is a one coat any surface emulsion which made the job quite easy.

Varnishing the top 

IKEA IVAR before & after

Let me know what you think. Isn’t it amazing what a lick of paint can do?

Bathtub Gin

Bathtub Gin

I’d been reading in a few places that you can make your own gin from Vodka. Cost-wise it’s not that different, by the time you’ve bought Vodka and all the ingredients you might as well just go out and buy some. I, however, wanted to […]

A pink wrap top

A pink wrap top

I sewed the wrap-top pattern included in Simply Sewing magazine. Last summer I signed up to a free subscription of Simply Sewing magazine. I think it was £0.99 for 3 issues or something like that. Of course, I forgot to unsubscribe and ended up paying […]

Grecian Dress

Grecian Dress

This is a dress I drafted and sewed myself a few years ago. It was the first dress that I had ever self-drafted. I held on to the measurements/diagrams/pattern in the hope to maybe one day share them with others through a paid or free pattern. Since I’m currently working on building a stock of pattern calculators, I plan to add instructions on how to make this dress. Funnily enough, my idea for this dress actually came from a maternity dress that I saw a picture of Kate Middleton wearing.

However, the plan was to wear it to a summer wedding so I decided to make it sleeveless. I have another Grecian style dress that ties up at the shoulder that I really like so I decided to add these to the dress.

Fabric-wise, I went for a soft teal jersey from John Lewis. I managed to find it reduced to just £8 per metre. It has a tiny hint of sheen to it which made it a bit classier and more suitable to wear to a wedding. The reason I went for jersey was that it is a bit more forgiving should the stitching not be straight, or something not quite right, and as mentioned earlier this was my first self-drafted dress. A lot of it was pure guesswork. The fact that it was jersey meant I didn’t need to worry about the fabric shredding and unravelling. I didn’t even hem it, I just made sure it was a clean cut.

Let me know what you think!

Paprika Chicken

Paprika Chicken

  This is a non-authentic version of Chicken Paprikash, a traditional Hungarian dish. This version is one that my family makes regularly, although my dad makes it with yoghurt rather than creme fraiche. Recently found out whilst reading a cooking book written by the lovely […]


Paprika Chicken

Paprika Chicken

Paprika Chicken

 

This is a non-authentic version of Chicken Paprikash, a traditional Hungarian dish.

This version is one that my family makes regularly, although my dad makes it with yoghurt rather than creme fraiche.

Recently found out whilst reading a cooking book written by the lovely owners of Percy’s that creme fraiche doesn’t curdle so I decided to give that a go.

(more…)