It’s hard not to love this classic winter meal, full of vegetables, tender chunks of beef and a fragrant stock. Make sure you use an inexpensive, fatty cut of beef like skirt as this will give you by the the best results when cooked slowly! Give it a try!
Serves 4 – Prep: 10 mins – Cooking time: 3 hours
– 400g beef skirt, cut into cubes
– 2 tbsp plain flour
– Large handful shallots
– 3 large carrots
– 4 medium-large potatoes (approx 400g)
– 1 tbsp thyme
– 2 bay leaves
– 1 beef stock cube
– Salt and pepper
– Boiling water
– 100g self-raising flour
– 50g suet
– Salt and pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 180c (fan)/ 200c/ gas mark 6. Place a medium/large casserole pot with a tight fitting lid on a medium heat. Place the beef into a mixing bowl, coat with plain flour. Melt the butter in the pot and then place in the coated beef, maybe do this batches so not to overcrowd the pot. hen browned all over, remove from the pot and set aside.
2. Meanwhile, peel all the vegetables, cut into similar size chunks, cut the larger shallots in half. Place all the vegetables into the casserole pot, add the bay leaves and thyme then cook for a further 10-15 minutes.
3. Add the beef back and any meat juices in with the vegetables, pour in enough boiling water to just cover everything together with the stock cube and give it a good stir, season with salt and pepper. Place the lid on top and bring to the boil. When you can hear it boiling carefully place into preheated oven for about 2 hours. Stir occasionally and top up with water if necessary.
4. To make the giant dumplings, mix the suet, self-raising flour and add enough water to make a stiff dough. Season with salt and pepper. Split the dough into quarters and roll into balls. Place onto the top of the stew 30 minutes before it’s finished, ensuring the lid is on firmly.
5. Serve with some fresh, crusty bread and tuck in!