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Julia Child's Boeuf Bourguignon--bacon substitute?

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Julia Child's recipe calls for browning the beef and vegetables in bacon fat, then cooking everything together (the recipe calls for a 6 ounce chunk). Obviously, I can't use bacon. Can anyone recommend a good substitute? I didn't think oil would provide enough flavor.

Many thanks....

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  1. There's always schmaltz and grieben....

    1. I've had sesame oil in a vegetarian dish that gave it a similarly smoky taste to bacon, but I don't know if it would work in bourgignon. You probably wouldn't want to use a lot.

      1. Just skip it. We have friends who are French (and owned a restaurant in France). Their recipe was very similar but they never used bacon. It won't be "exactly" Julia Child's recipe but so what?

        1. If you have a kosher butcher that cures its own meats nearby I would go for their house cured beef fry - I have done that many a time with great success

          1 Reply
          1. re: weinstein5

            I usually use a little chopped and sauteed Turkey Cabanos just for the smoky flavor.

          2. And let's not forget Bacon Salt! :)

            http://www.baconsalt.com/

            (Watch out for the milchig flavors.)

            5 Replies
              1. re: daphnar

                It's like Lawry's seasoned salt with a smoky something. Great on scrambled eggs & popcorn. Two of the flavors have something milchig in the mix so beware. They also have Baconnaise - bacon-y mayo (also milchig).

                http://www.baconnaise.com/

                1. re: daphnar

                  Believe it or not, it's actually pretty low in sodium. I find the salt taste noticable but not objectionable. Both the salt and the Baconnaise have gone over gangbusters in our house.

                  1. re: rockycat

                    They should make the baconnaise pareve.

                    1. re: DeisCane

                      It's not clear from the ingredients why it's milchig (or why two of the salt products are). I'm sure they were happy just to tap the Kosher market, probably didn't consider the practical ramifications.