Traditional old style beef stew with herb dumplings

    2 hours 30 min

    You can't really go wrong with this stew. It goes in the oven and cooks itself. It can be made the day before and refrigerated overnight once cool, that really enhances the stew. You simply reheat it and 20 minutes before you are ready to add the dumplings which you should always make fresh.


    Angus, Scotland, UK
    12 people made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 1 tablespoon olive oil
    • 2 medium onions, finely sliced
    • 2 or 3 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1kg (2 lb 4 oz) braising steak
    • 2 heaped tablespoons plain flour or cornflour
    • 1 pinch pepper
    • 300ml (10 oz) beef stock
    • 1 bouquet garni
    • 150ml (5 oz) red wine
    • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley, to garnish
    • For the herb dumplings
    • 115g (4 oz) self raising flour
    • 55g (2 oz) suet or vegetable shortening
    • 1 teaspoon wholegrain mustard
    • 1 heaped tablespoon chopped parsley
    • 1 teaspoon dried sage
    • pepper
    • 4 tablespoons cold water

    Prep:15min  ›  Cook:2hr15min  ›  Ready in:2hr30min 

    1. Preheat oven to 150 C / Gas 2.
    2. Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large frying pan and fry the onion and garlic until soft and brown. Remove from pan using a slotted spoon and place into the casserole dish to be used.
    3. Trim the meat and cut into thick chunks. Using the remaining oil in pan and fry over quite high heat, stirring well, until brown all over.
    4. Sprinkle over the flour and add some pepper, stir well then add to casserole pot.
    5. Add the beef stock, bouqet garni and wine.
    6. Stir, cover with lid or tin foil, cook in middle of the oven for 2 to 2.5 hours. Do not panic if its been left on longer, it can be on for 1 extra hour without burning.
    7. Do not start making the dumplings until around 20 minutes before your stew is ready. Proceed by placing flour, suet, mustard, parsley, sage, and pepper in a bowl and mix well.
    8. Just before adding the dumplings to the stew, add enough water slowly to the mix to form a firm enough but soft dough.
    9. Divide the dough into 12 equal pieces and shape into dumplings by flouring your hands.
    10. Remove stew from the oven and check the seasoning. Discard the bouquet garni then add the dumplings, pushing them halfway under the liquid.
    11. Return covered dish to oven until dumplings have doubled in size, about 15 minutes.
    12. Serve with parsley scattered over the top, a big slab of crusty bread and butter and a bowl of Brussels sprouts. Just put the whole lot on the table, making sure casserole is on a heat mat and let everyone tuck in.


    To see how to make a bouquet garni, see our recipe and video.
    Dumplings must be made fresh. You can vary the herbs used, try rosemary or thyme. You can add some crushed garlic too.

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    Reviews in English (4)


    Excellent meaty, moist, full of flavour. Made it loads of times, i was full of flu once and craved some. Almost cried , i did. Wasn't really flu, it was a hangover my friends, i musn't lie. Perfect for a hangover. Healthy too.  -  08 May 2018


    100% perfect 👍🏾  -  07 May 2018


    Perfect !!!!!!!  -  08 Jan 2017