This is a no – frills classic. Perfect for a winter’s day.
Classic Beef Stew and Dumplings
- 900g ( 2 lb ) Stewing or braising steak
- 3 tbsp plain flour
- Vegetable oil
- 3 carrots
- 2 large onions
- 1 tsp tomato puree
- Few springs thyme
- A bay leaf
- 1 pint good beef stock
- Maldon salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Chopped curly parsley (to serve)
- Crusty bread to serve
- 110g (4oz) self raising flour
- 50g (2oz) shredded suet
- Chopped parsley
- Preheat the oven to 150C (300F) gas mark 2.
- Trim the meat of excess fat, dice into cubes (at least an inch square) and roll in seasoned flour. Peel and chop the carrots and onions into large chunks.
- In a heavy based lidded casserole pot (or a separate frying pan) add some oil over a high heat, brown the meat on all sides and set aside. Turn the heat to medium, add a knob of butter and add the carrots & onions and cook, stirring for about 5 mins. Put the carrots, onions and meat in the casserole dish over a medium heat, add whatever flour is left and stir to cook a little. Add the tomato puree and herbs then slowly add the stock and stir.
- Season and put in the oven for a good 2 hours.
- In the meantime make the dumplings. Mix the flour, suet and parley together then slowly add drops of water and use your hands to pull the mixture together into a dough. You do not want it wet and soggy so as it starts to pull together add literally a drop at a time. Roll into small walnut sized balls, turn the oven up to 180C (350F) gas 4, and add the dumplings to the stew. Cook for a further 30 mins until the dumplings are big and fluffy.
- Garnish with parsley to serve.
- This is delicious with fresh crusty bread but can also be served with baby new potatoes.