This beef casserole has a really original twist to it, in the form of mulled wine which is used to infuse the beef and veg with loads of festive cheer! The beef is so tender and full of really warming, comforting flavours like nutmeg and cinnamon. After a couple of hours in the oven, the reduced spiced wine and beef stock will give your meal a delicious sweetness that you don’t get without cooking things long and slow. This takes around 2 and a half hours in the oven but you won’t be disappointed with the results! Dish this beef casserole up with steamed potatoes or mashed potatoes, or you might just want it with plenty of crusty bread – however you choose to dish it up, your family won’t be disappointed.
- 4 cloves
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 star anise
- 1 pinch ground nutmeg (3-4 gratings of fresh nutmeg)
- 1tbsp light brown sugar
- ¾ bottle of red wine
- 2tbp olive oil
- 1 white onion, diced
- 2 carrots, roughly chopped
- 2 celery sticks, roughly chopped
- 2 bay leaves
- 500g stewing beef, diced
- 2tbsp plain flour
- 500ml beef stock
Pre-heat oven to 160°C/320°F/Gas Mark 3
Place all the spices, sugar and wine into a saucepan on a moderate heat and bring to the boil, then simmer for 8-10 mins.
In a large casserole dish over medium heat, throw in the oil, onion, carrots, celery and bay leaves and stir for around 5-7 mins.
While that’s cooking, coat your beef all over with the flour, season then shake off the excess. Once the vegetables start to soften, put your beef in the pan and fry off until it browns all over.
Once brown, pour in couple of spoonfuls of the mulled wine mixture and stir for a few seconds to deglaze the bottom of the pan, then chuck in the remaining wine and beef stock. Bring up to the boil, then put the lid on and place in the pre-heated oven for around 2-2 hrs 30 mins. Remove from the oven when the meat starts to fall apart, check seasoning then serve
This recipe work well with many cuts of beef really, just as long as its cooked long and slow until the meat starts to fall apart.