Nothing says home to me like a braised beef hotpot. It’s the sort of dish Dad would cook on a Sunday between dog walks, rugby matches and lighting the fire. The house would slowly fill with the delicious aromas of braising beef and I was always first past the post when the call to the kitchen for supper finally came.
This recipe, despite being time heavy, takes almost no effort for maximum taste. But perhaps the best part about it is the oozy, cheesy beef jaffle that you can make from the leftovers later in the week.
See this dish as part of a MEAL PLAN
Prep time: 5 hours
500g chuck steak
1 clove garlic
2 par boiled potatoes
4 tbsp cornflour
2 tbsp tomato puree
500ml beef stock
salt and pepper
olive oil for frying
Preheat your oven to 160 degrees Celsius.
Cut the beef into nice big chunks and coat with seasoned cornflour. It might seem odd to add flour to the beef, but it will thicken the sauce and create a rich, oozy gravy.
Next, in a heavy based casserole dish heat a glug of olive oil over a medium heat.
Chop the onion into large chunks (about eighths) and add them to the hot pan. Once the onions have a little colour on them add the beef (you might need to add in a touch more oil if the beef instantly sticks to the bottom). Once the meat has browned on all sides add in the garlic before pouring in the stock a little at a time until you’re sure there are no lumps in the sauce. Next, add in the stout, chopped prunes and tomato puree, season with plenty of salt and pepper, before placing on the lid and putting into the oven for one hour.
Chop the par boiled potato into thick (about 2cm) slices and place them over the beef until it’s completely covered. You’ll notice a thin layer of fat has risen to the top – don’t be tempted to skim this off as it will bubble up between the potato slices, cooking them and forming a crispy top.
Put the dish back into the oven for a further 2-3 hours, or until the potatoes are golden on the top and the beef is falling apart.
A nice mix of mushrooms would fatten the dish out
Hardy herbs like rosemary and thyme
Slightly crunchy green beans and buttered peas
A light salad of oak lettuce, white beans and spring onions, with a lemon dressing.