· 3 pounds beef chuck or other boneless stewing beef, cut into 2-inch cubes and patted dry
· 2 ¼ teaspoons pink Himalayan salt, more to taste
· ½ teaspoon black pepper
· 5 ounces bacon, diced (about 1 1/4 cups)
· 1 onion, finely chopped
· 1 large carrot, sliced
· 2 garlic cloves, minced
· 1 teaspoon tomato paste
· 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
· 1 750-milliliter bottle of burgundy red wine
· 1 large bay leaf
· 2 tablespoons of fresh thyme picked
· 8 ounces pearl onions, peeled (about 12 to 15 onions)
· 8 ounces cremini mushrooms, halved if large (about 4 cups)
· 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
· Pinch sugar
· Chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
1. Season beef with 2 teaspoons salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and set aside for 30 minutes at room temperature
2. Cook bacon over medium-low heat about 10 to 15 minutes and reserve fat in pot
3. Heat oven to 350 degrees. Raise heat under pot to medium-high and cook until fat is starting to smoke. Lay half the beef cubes in a single layer in the pot, leaving space between pieces. Cook until well browned on all sides, 10 to 15 minutes; transfer pieces to a plate as they brown. Repeat with remaining beef.
4. Stir in onion, carrot and remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt and cook until soft, about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
5. Stir in garlic and tomato paste, and cook for 1 minute. Stir in flour, cook for 1 minute, then add wine, bay leaf and thyme, scraping up brown bits at bottom of pot. Add browned beef and half the cooked lardons back to pot, cover, and transfer to oven. Let cook until beef is very tender, about 1 1/2 hours, turning meat halfway through
6. Meanwhile, in a large skillet set over high heat, combine onions, mushrooms, 1/4 cup water, the olive oil and a pinch each of salt, pepper and sugar. Bring to a simmer, then cover and reduce heat to medium, cooking for 15 minutes. Uncover, raise heat to high, and cook, until vegetables are well browned, 5 to 7 minutes.
7. Scatter onions and mushrooms and rest of cooked bacon over stew, top with parsley.