It’s winter. And I have a brand new slow cooker thanks to the lovely people at Crock-UK. I’ve been dying to try it out and the other day I christened it using one of my family’s favourite recipes.
In fact I did adapt a bit – I didn’t have any celery to hand, so I used jerusalem artichoke and added some celery salt at the end for flavour. And I didn’t have any parsley either, so it looks like any old beef stew. But it tastes truly delicious, so do try it!
Spiced Beef in Guinness and Orange
Ingredients (makes 6-8 helpings)
1kg of stewing beef cut into cubes and as much fat as possible removed
1-1.5 pints of Guinness
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon cumin
20 cardamom pods, green shell removed and black seeds retained
3 or 4 bay leaves
2 sticks of celery scrubbed and cut into 1cm chunks
1 medium turnip, peeled and cut into 1cm chunks
2 medium carrots peeled and cut into 1cm chunks
1 large orange
1 tablespoon flour
Salt and Pepper
1 tablespoon or so of rapeseed oil
Flat leaved parsley to garnish
Put the cumin and cardamom seeds into a pestle and mortar and grind down a bit
Spice the flour with the allspice and pepper
Toss the beef in the spiced flour
In a large ovenproof casserole, brown all the meat in batches, then do the same with the vegetables
Toast the cumin and cardamom lightly before returning all the meat and vegetables to the pan and adding enough Guinness to cover the mixture well (at least a pint), and the bay leaf. If like me your casserole isn’t quite deep enough you can top the mix up with more Guinness during the cooking process!
Bring to a gentle simmer on the stovetop then put a lid on the casserole and put in the oven at 120-140c for 7 hours (or use a slow cooker on low for up to 10 hours!).
Check periodically to make sure it’s not drying out (add water or Guinness as necessary) and to scrape the meat mixture from the sides of the casserole back down into the pan.
About half an hour before you want to serve, grate the zest of the orange into the mixture and stir well
When you are ready to serve squeeze in the juice of the orange, check the seasoning and add salt and pepper as necessary and garnish with parsley.
This casserole reheats very well and can be frozen.
Serve with mashed potato and a simple green vegetable