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An extremely simple to make beef and ale casserole which is full of flavour!  The dumplings make this dish… this is a definite must try!


Serves 4
Preparation time:  15 minutes
Cooking time:  2 hours 15 minutes

Ingredients

For the casserole:
2 tbsp vegetable oil
2 large onions, thickly sliced
750g braising steak, cut into 2-3cm cubes
3 tbsp plain flour
Freshly ground pepper & salt
2 large carrots, peeled & sliced
2 tbsp demerara sugar
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
2 tbsp tomato puree
550ml bottle of Newcastle Brown Ale

For the Dumplings:
200g self-raising flour
100g vegetable or beef suet
½ tsp salt
75g Stilton, crumbled
1 tbsp finely chopped parsley
1 tbsp hot horseradish (from a jar)
150ml water

To serve:
2 tbsp chopped fresh parsley
Steamed green vegetables



Preparation method

1.  Preheat the oven to 180°C/Fan 160°C/Gas Mark 3.

2.  Heat the oil in a large casserole and add the onions, cook until they start to colour.  

3.  In a large bowl toss the beef in the flour and season well.  Add to the casserole (there is no need to brown the meat).  Now add all the remaining casserole ingredients and bring to the boil.  Cover with a lid and place in the oven for 1 ½ hours.

4.  In the meantime, make the dumplings.  In a large bowl, mix together the flour, suet and salt using your fingertips to break up the suet.  Now add the Stilton and the parsley.

5.  Combine the horseradish and the water together then place in the bowl.  Bring the mixture together with your hands until you have a dough consistency.  Then, using your hands roll the dough into 8-10 balls and set aside and cover.

6.  When the beef is soft and tender, season to taste.  Now drop the dumplings on top, cover with the lid and return to the oven for 30 minutes.

7.  Now that the dumplings have puffed up, remove the lid and raise the temperature to 200°C/Fan 180°C/Gas Mark 4.  Cook until the dumplings have developed a crust.  Scatter with parsley and serve on warm plates with steamed green vegetable, enjoy!

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