Corned Beef Stew
This true classic – sometimes called a corned beef hot pot – is mega easy and I roll it out every time autumn rolls around. My ma used to make this once a week in the winter and it was a life-saver. I make this in my slow cooker but of course you can make it on your hob in a regular saucepan. I always make this to eat the following day as it’s only then the the full rich flavours come out of this beautiful rich stew. Chop the carrots and potatoes as roughly as you like but remember to chop the mushrooms up super-fine so they melt into a supreme umima taste-explosion. It’s BETTER eaten the following day.
Time to make: 2hrs (hob) / 6-8 hrs slow-cooker
Mouths: feeds 4
- 1 x tin of corned beef
- 1 large onion
- 2-3 large potatoes
- 1 large carrot
- handful of mushrooms
- 2 tbsp tomato paste
- 2 tbsp Worcester sauce
- 2 x stock cube (beef, preferably, but any will do)
- A generous glug of oil
- 2 x bay leaves
- 1 x small bunch of fresh thyme /large pinch of dried thyme
- 1 x fried egg per person
- A large heavy saucepan for huge vat of stew
- A peeler is handy
- A boiled kettle to pour over at the end will give your stew a head-start
- Peel and dice the onion put it in your stew-pit with a glug of oil and a low heat. Give them a good 5 minutes to soften. Don’t let them brown.
- Clean off (or peel) your carrots. Cut them lengthways once (or twice) and slice along the length to get diced pieces. Throw in the pan with onions. Let them start to soften with the onions.
- Don’t bother peeling the potatoes. Just square them off (discarding the off-cuts) and chop into small pieces. Throw in the pan. Stir it all in together.
- Put the lid on and let them sweat while you turn to the mushrooms.
- Slice up your mushrooms and draw them together on the chopping board. Now chop into them; first one way and then the other. Draw them back together and chop across them again. Keep going until they start to resemble breadcrumbs. Scrape all of this goodness into the pan and stir in. Drop the lid onto the pan and let these ingredients make friends.
- Fill your kettle and switch it on.
- Now add the corned beef too and let that sweat while the kettle is boiling.
- Pour water into the stew-pot till it sits just above all the ingredients. Push the corned beef down as it’ll be sat there in one stubborn lump. It’ll break up, don’t worry.
- Cover and leave to cook low-and-slow.
- Serve with a fried egg and eat at a table with a loaf and butter.