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    Friday, June 10, 2011

    Grandma's Basic Beef Stew

    This Thursday at Grandmas, I decided to make Beef Stew and Dumplings for the Grand-kids.
    Its winter now don't you know and basic stick to the ribs food is necessary.
    I wasn't sure how it would go but they loved it and second helpings all around
    except of course for the littlest.
    I used Rachel Allen's Dumpling Recipe, which is basically Irish Soda Bread.
    The dumplings were very tasty but need to be eaten pretty soon after cooking. By the time I got to my dinner they were a bit heavy. I think I might try one of my scone recipes next time, could be lighter.
    BUT the Stew was a Triumph and it is so basic and so tasty. I chopped the Mushrooms very fine as I know the kids are not wrapped on them. Make it small and hide, I say.

    840 gms Blade Steak
    3 tablespoons seasoned Flour
    2 tablespoons Olive Oil
    2 medium  Onions chopped
    Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
    1 large Carrot chopped
    1 stalk Celery chopped
    150 gms finely chopped Mushrooms
    1 medium Courgette grated
    50 mls white wine

    2 Massel Beef Stock cubes
    2 litres Hot Water
    2 tablespoons Tomato Ketchup

    Cut beef into cubes and dust with seasoned flour
    Put 2 tablespoons olive oil into a med hot pan
    Drop in the beef and brown.
    Don't overcrowd the pan, you want a nice crust on the beef, for that extra flavour
    Pop the cooked beef into your casserole dish
    Add onions cook gently till soft
    Season with little salt and pepper
    Add celery, carrot and continue to cook till soft
    Add to casserole

    Add 1 more tablespoon oil to pan and add mushrooms
    Season and after about 2 minutes, add courgettes
    Continue ot saute about another 3 minutes
    Add white wine and reduce down
    Place in the casserole
    dissolve the stock cubes in hot water
    Use a little to get any scraps from the pan
    All into the casserole along with the tomato ketchup
    Stir well, Make sure everything is just covered.

    Into 160C oven
    Cook for about 2 hours
    The aroma filled the kitchen.
    While I was cooking the kids were cooking too
    They love to make flower soup
    Last week they were so enthusiastic, they completely denuded my Purple Pansies
    Well I guess they needed de-heading
    It made beautiful Purple Flower soup though

    The Dumplings
    Pre heat the oven to 230C

    350gms plain flour
    3/4 level tsp baking soda
    1tsp salt
    300 mls buttermilk

    Mix with claw hand till it blends  together
    Onto floured board
    Press out to 2-3 cms thick
    Cut into small scones
    Place on top of stew not too close together

    Brush with beaten egg and a little water

    230C for 10 minutes
    200C for 20 minutes
    The kids love my Broccoli
    I just break it into florets
    Blanch in boiling salted water, for about 3 minutes
    Drain and run cold water over it, to stop cooking and keep green
    When you are ready to serve
    Heat a pan to medium
    Add 1 tablespoom olive
    and 2 cloves garlic finely chopped
    Just cook for a couple of minutes be careful not to brown
    It could become bitter
    Toss the Broccoli in the oil and cook for a couple of minutes till they heat up
    Grind some black pepper on top
    And a good squeeze of lemon juice.

    For pudding Banana Fritters
    Pieces of Bananas dipped in Batter
    Fried and then rolled in cinnamon and suge
    Eaten in the hand with cream and molten Nutella
    Ms Mia did a lovely presentation of hers

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