Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Tuesday - Beef stew with dumplings

Tonight I went for a winter warmer. My Mum makes an awesome stew with amazing dumplings (she also makes golden syrup dumplings which I might share one day ) which were always sure to please the ever growing crowds.

So, inspired by Mum's Kitchen here is my take on a Beef Stew with Dumplings.

*It may look like allot of ingredients but it is all stuff you will probably find in the fridge and cupboard. I like to think that stew is one of those meals you can pull together when all else fails.

300g steak cut into chunky cubes (we buy whatever is on special... it will be stewed for a while so pick a cut that takes well to hot & wet conditions :-p)
splash of oil
1/2 cup seasoned plain flour
handful pumpkin cut into large cubes
half a carrot cut into thick rounds
1 onion cut into thick chunks
1 large, very ripe tomato
1 can diced tomatoes
1 cup hot chicken stock (I make mine from a powder so make it on the strong side)
slosh of red wine vinegar
larger slosh of white wine (something we always have in the fridge for some strange reason)
salt and pepper
sprinkle of 'Italian Herbs' (rosemary, basil, parsley etc would all work)
1/4 cup tomato paste

1 cup self raising flour
1 tbsp herbs
100 ml water (I used sparkling mineral water for something different)
30 g melted butter

Cover beef well in seasoned flour
In a hot, deep oiled saucepan seal beef until brown
Add in onion and cook a little
Slosh some red wine vinegar and white wine over beef and stir until union is soft
Add the rest of stew ingredients except for the can of tomatoes
Reduce heat a little and season
Allow to simmer while you make the dumplings. At this stage you want the contents to be just covered by liquid so if you are using a large pot you may need to add a little more stock.
Stew for around 20 mins

To make dumplings combine flour, salt, pepper, herbs and water and mix. The dough should be a little crumbly at this stage.

Pour in butter and mix until the dough is well combined and a little bit sticky. You may wish to add a little more water to find the right consistency.

Back to the stew and add the can of tomatoes and stir
Roll the dough into 3cm balls. You will know if the dough is not right if it sticks to your hands. If it does and a little more flour.
It should make around 12 dumplings.
Place the dumplings in the stew.
All the ingredients and dumplings should be just covered by liquid. Use a little more stock or hot water to do this if more liquid is required.
Stew for about 30 mins stirring VERY gently a couple of times. Be sure not to break up the dumplings when stiring. All you really need to do is stop the stew from catching to the bottom of the pot.

3 dumplings and some stew is enough for 1.

Serves 4.


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