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French Mushroom Bourguignon

3-4 slices of bacon, cut into 1” pieces
2-3 T olive oil, divided as needed
6-8 oz. sliced, white mushrooms or ½ white and ½ Baby Bella
2 shallots, minced
2 cloves of garlic, minced
2 carrots, sliced
1 – 1 1/2 c whole onions
2 T Cognac
3/4 c red wine
1/2 cup fired roasted tomatoes
1 c vegetable stock
Pinch of thyme
1 bay leaf
2 T butter, divided
1 T flour

Heat the Dutch oven and add the bacon and cook over medium heat until fat is rendered, and the bacon is crisp and browned.  Remove with a slotted spoon.  If preparing vegetarian option start with heating olive oil.

Add the carrots and shallots to the fat.  Cook stirring often until the vegetables are softened and lightly browned.  Sprinkle with a pinch of salt.   Add the garlic and allow to cook until softened, 2-3 minutes.  Add the Cognac, red wine, tomatoes, and stock.  Stir in the thyme and bay leaf.  Cover with a tight-fitting lid and simmer over low heat for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile heat 1 T olive oil and 1 T butter to a separate frying pan.  Sauté the whole onions until lightly browned.  Add the onions to the Dutch oven.  Continue to simmer for 10 minutes, uncover, and cook until all the vegetables are tender, and broth is slightly reduced.  Taste, season with salt and pepper.

Remove bay leaf before serving

To thicken broth: optional- Mix together the remaining butter softened and the flour.  Add to the hot stew and stir to thicken the broth.

Serve: over mashed potatoes, noodles, polenta, or grits.

Garnish with crumbled bacon and some chopped parsley

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