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Method Prep:10min › Cook:9hr › Ready in:9hr10min
After chopping the first 6 ingredients, add them straight into slowcooker.
Fill with water, ensuring you cover all the ingredients.
Add the Marmite, Worcestershire sauce and gravy granules, then give it all a good stir. You can leave on low all day or high for 5-6 hours.
45 minutes before serving, place suet, flour, salt and pepper in a bowl and gradually add water, stirring, until mixture sticks together. Divide into 4 balls, place on top of stew and either: carry on cooking dumplings on high in slow cooker for stodgy dumplings, or, a personal favorite for crispy top dumplings, put crock pot in oven on gas mark 7 (200 degrees)) for 30 minutes.
Serve up stew using slotted spoon to drain gravy, this way you can ensure everyone gets equal amounts and you can add more gravy granules for thicker gravy.
You can add any extra veg you like, or a tin of lentil soup instead of pearl barley, both of which give a thick consistency.
I added 2 medium sized king edwards peeled and chopped into small bite-sized chunks. I think the dumplings need to go in a lot earlier, like halfway through the process so that they get to absorb more of the juices and plump up otherwise they're like hard dough balls. 6 hours on high seems fine although an extra hour or 2 wouldn't hurt. The result was amazing. Be sure to have plenty of bread to hand afterwards to mop up the gravy. - 07 Oct 2013
I thought that this was ok,but it just didn't have the WOW factor for me,plus my 5 year old daughter wasn't that fussed about it either and ate it reluctantly,on the other hand my hubby quite liked it!Its not a BAD dish,but its just not for me! - 13 Jun 2012