Friday, August 26, 2005

Beef Stew

Gosh, I just realised I have been blogging a few times about meat, meat and more meat! My thousand apologies to the vegetarians. I made this a few weeks back when it was a rare cold rainy night. I am totally affected by the weather when it comes to food and occasionally, I fall back to my British training of checking the weather forecast before I plan a meal (so "siow!" i.e. crazy in Chinese). Sadly, the Malaysian weather forecasts are not as accurate as the British ones so it can be off the mark somedays.

I rarely make beef stew, probably because Splashie Boy gets quite a bit of stew at home courtesy of his dad who is an excellent cook. I adapted a recipe from one of my BBC Good Food magazine to make this. Originally a beef pie recipe with a grated potato topping, I replaced it with some mash as that's Splashie Boy's favourite. I wanted some vegetables in my stew, so I added some carrots which I had on hand. If you're feeling non-alcoholic, you can replace the red wine with beef stock. What I love about stew is how it always tastes better the longer you keep it. Sometimes, after I make a big batch of stew, I keep some in the deep freeze for busy weekday nights. I will be posting the original BBC Good Food recipe so you can opt to make it as a pie or serve it with mash like how I did.

Beef Pie with Crisp Potato Crust (BBC Good Food)
1 tbsp olive oil
500g beef braising steak, cut into chunks
1 onion, roughly chopped
250g oyster mushrooms
1 tbsp tomato paste
1 tbsp flour
100ml red wine
200ml beef stock
350g potato, peeled
25g butter, cut into small pieces

Heat oil in a non stick pan large enough for the stew over high heat. Add the beef and cook for ten minutes until it is browned all over. Remove from pan. Cook onion for about seven minutes until softened, stir through mushrooms and cook for about three minutes until golden. Stir in tomato paste and flour and cook for another 1 minute. Pour wine and beef stock and bring to a simmer. Add back the beef cubes. Cook uncovered over gentle heat for about two hours until meat is tender. Top up with water if necessary. Pour mixture in a 2 litre baking dish.

Heat oven to 190C and bring a pan of lightly salted water to the boil. Cook potatoes for about ten minutes until beginning to soften. Cool under running tap, then coarsely grate. Sprinkle over beef and dot with butter. Pop into the oven and cook for thirty minutes until the crust is nice and crispy. Serves four.

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Joycelyn said...

that looks like comfort food at its best...beef stew and mash...hmmm...cheers,j

Pink Elle said...

Mmmm...enough said! Think I'll give it a shot one of these days! Thanks for the recipe, Boo!

FooDcrazEE said...

yummy! looks very good. What abt some paprika so spice it up. Wouldnt that be lovely.

Great stuff and true like most stew, be it chinese, western, malay or whatever, the longer u keep , the better it taste. Not too long though.

eat stuff said...

Looks great
have you considered making the mash and baking it on the top to make a kind of shepards pie?

Amy said...

Unlike most people, I am not the biggest beef stew fan in the world but wow--this recipe sounds pretty good!

boo_licious said...

j - ah! You're so right, it was total comfort food.

sue & eternity - hope you enjoy the stew/pie.

foodcrazee - great idea about the paprika, I use that so little in my cooking.

claire - Splashie Boy was drooling over your suggestion as he loves shepherd's pie too.

Amy - I like the oyster mushrooms bit in this stew and it's so easy to make hence it's a fav.

FooDcrazEE said...


oyster mushroom would absorb the gravy and thus make it tasty. Prefer to use fresh button mushroom but its a lil expensive. Unless u like the earthy flavour of it. Never use canned mushroom for STEW!

boo_licious said...

Thanks foodcrazee for the tips! I don't like canned mushrooms but some Chinese dishes do call for them so I do use them occasionally.

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