In this column last week I said it was starting to feel a little cooler in the evenings, but it wasn’t cold enough for a hearty stew just yet.
No sooner than the recipe was written and sent to The News, the heavens opened to rain, wind, much cooler temperatures and darker evenings.
A Sunday spent indoors – even the terriers didn’t want to venture out – looking at the rain droplets running down the window panes and all I could think of was a warming stew.
At least I had time to prepare the dish and watch the rugby as the rich aroma of beef and tomato filled the kitchen.
This really is a comforting dish to eat when it’s horrid outside and all you fancy is something to warm your belly.
Ingredients – serves 4
4 x 225g braising steaks, each cut into 2
2 onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Tspn tomato paste
200g cherry tomatoes
1 bay leaf
200ml red wine
500ml beef stock
1. In a large oven proof pan fry the onions until lightly golden.
2. Stir in the garlic and tomato paste and cook for 2 mins.
3. Add the wine and reduce by half and then add the stock and reduce this by half.
4. Fry the steaks in a little olive oil in a frying pan to colour all over.
5. Add the steaks to the pot, add the bay leaf and tomatoes.
6. Put a lid on the pot and transfer to a preheated oven 150C gas 3 for 3 hours when the beef will be tender.
7. Taste the sauce in the pot and season if necessary.
8. Serve with roast carrots and if you like some horseradish dumplings which you can add to the beef pot 20 mins before serving.