Beef and Stout Casserole with Herby Dumplings

A Winter Favourite… Beef and Stout Casserole with Herby Dumplings


  • MAIN
  • SIDE
  • 4 tablesp. sunflower oil
  • 500g shallots or button onions, peeled
  • 1 large onion, sliced
  • 4 carrots, cut into 2½cm pieces
  • 1 tablesp. sugar
  • 65g plain flour
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1½kg chuck or braising steak, cut into 6-7cm chunks
  • 75g butter
  • 1 litre stout
  • 300ml beef stock
  • The leaves from 3 large sprigs thyme
  • 4 fresh bay leaves
  • 4 tablesp. Worcestershire sauce
  • 250g chestnut mushrooms, wiped clean and left whole
  • 250g field mushrooms, wiped clean and thickly sliced

Herby Dumplings

  • 100g self-raising flour
  • A large pinch baking powder
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 50g shredded beef suet
  • The leaves from 2 sprigs thyme
  • Approx. 100ml cold water


Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large, flameproof casserole. Add the shallots or small onions and fry until they are nicely browned all over. Set aside on a plate.

Add the onion, carrots and sugar and fry until nicely browned. Set aside with the shallots.

Put the flour into a large bowl and season well with salt and pepper. Add the beef and toss together well.

Heat another 2 tablespoons of oil in the casserole and fry the beef in batches until nicely browned on all sides. Set each batch aside with the vegetables as it browns.

Add 25g of the butter to the casserole and stir in the remaining seasoned flour from the bowl.

Gradually stir in the stout, rubbing the base of the pan to release all the caramelised juices.

Stir in the stock, followed by the beef and vegetables, thyme leaves, bay leaves, Worcestershire sauce and seasoning.

Bring to the boil, part-cover and leave to simmer very slowly on the top of the stove for 1½ hours.

Melt the remaining butter in a large frying pan, add the mushrooms and fry briskly for 2 minutes.

Stir them into the casserole, part-cover, and simmer for another 1 hour until the beef is tender.