Mr Osbiston and I were lucky enough to get a slow-cooker as a sort of late Christmas present and I’ve been having a great time experimenting with recipes. I love the fact that you can buy a cheap cut of meat, sling it in the slow cooker in the morning and then come home to a beautiful meal in the evening. My favourite recipe that I have tried so far has got to be this beef bourguinon that I adapted from hidden ponies. Absolutely perfect winter fare.
Slow cooker beef bourguignon
7g dried porcini mushrooms
600g stewing steak, cut into 2.5cm cubes, any fat removed
100g pancetta lardons
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
2 cloves of garlic, minced
200ml red wine
1/4 cup beef stock
1 teaspoon dried parsley
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 cups baby button mushrooms, sliced
1.5 tablespoon cornflour
Add the dried porcini mushrooms to a quarter cup of boiling water and set aside for half an hour. In the meantime brown the beef in a large frying pan over a medium-high heat. If your pan doesn’t fit all the meat you can do it in batches. Add the beef to the slow cooker and drain any fat from the pan. Add the pancetta to the pan and fry until crispy. Add to the slow cooker and drain any fat from the pan. Add the olive oil to the pan and then add the onion, garlic and carrot to the pain with a good sprinkling of salt and pepper and cook until it starts to soften, 3 – 4 minutes. Remove the porcini mushrooms from the soaking liquid and chop (reserve the soaking liquid) Add the mushrooms and soaking liquid to the onions and carrots along with the wine, stock parsley and thyme. Bring to the boil and simmer for a couple of minutes to burn off the alcohol.
Add the wine mixture to the slow cooker, close the lid and cook on low for 10 hours or until the beef is very tender.
Now cook the sliced button mushrooms in the butter until brown and add to the slow cooker. Mix the cornflour with a couple of tablespoons of water and stir into the mixture in the slow cooker. Replace the lid, turn the slow cooker to high and give it another 10 – 15 minutes to thicken a bit before serving.
Serve with mashed potatoes.
Please excuse the less than sterling picture effort. I am not a skilled enough photographer to make stew look pretty.