Muffin-topped winter beef stew

Muffin-topped winter beef stew

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(123 ratings)

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Cooking time

Prep: 20 mins Cook: 2 hrs, 30 mins

Skill level

Easy

Servings

Serves 2 adults and 2-3 children

Muffin on stew? You’d better believe it – think of it as a lighter alternative to suet dumplings

Nutrition and extra info

Additional info

  • Freezable
Nutrition info

Nutrition per adult serving

kcalories
847
protein
46g
carbs
82g
fat
39g
saturates
14g
fibre
10g
sugar
0g
salt
2.81g

Ingredients

For the stew

  • 500g braising steaks, cut into bite-sized chunks
  • 2 tbsp plain flour, seasoned with pepper and a little salt
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 large onion, finely chopped
  • 450g carrots, cut into chunks
  • 2 large parsnips, cut into chunks
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tbsp sundried or regular tomato paste
  • 300ml red wine or extra stock
  • 450ml vegetable stock

For the topping

  • 225g plain flour
  • 3 tsp baking powder
  • 140g cheddar, coarsely grated
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 150ml milk

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Method

  1. Heat oven to 150C/fan 130C/gas 2. Toss the beef in seasoned flour. Heat the oil in a large flameproof casserole. Fry the beef over a high heat until browned all over – it’s easiest to do this in batches. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
  2. Add 2 tbsp water and the onion to the pan, stir well over a medium heat, scraping up the crusty bits from the bottom of the pan. Lower the heat and fry gently for 10 mins, stirring occasionally until the onions have softened.
  3. Tip in the carrots, parsnips and bay leaf, then fry for 2 mins more. Return the beef to the pan, stir in the tomato paste, wine if using, and stock, then bring to the boil. Cover and cook in the oven for 1¾-2 hrs until the meat is tender. Can be made up to 2 days ahead or frozen for up to 1 month. Defrost thoroughly in the fridge before topping and baking. Take out of the oven and increase the temperature to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5.
  4. To make the topping, sieve the flour and baking powder into a bowl and add half the cheese. Mix olive oil and milk, then stir into the flour to make a soft, slightly sticky dough. Add more milk, if necessary. Spoon the dough over the meat and vegetables, sprinkle with the remaining cheese and bake for about 15 mins until golden, risen and cooked through.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, January 2006

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Comments

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dwatson27's picture

Stew wonderful! I doubled the topping as per reader advice and it was far too much ! Way undercooked for a family of 4! Next time I will cook casserole/stew as per recipe and probably use a baked suet dumpling with cheese from my own recipe. Rate this 4stars plus 3stars for topping

sharon300's picture

Just finished serving this, it is absolutely gorgeous, did it to the word using feather blade steak. The meat just melted in the mouth and the muffin top was so scrumptious. I did this gluten free just changing the flour. Will deffinetly be making this again.

stoner14's picture

Really tasty recipe. Have made it several times now - I think the best topping amount is to increase the recipe stated amount by 50%. Much nicer than dumplings!

cshobbs's picture

Excellent! Easily made suitable for coeliacs by using gluten-free flour, stock and flour.

satutatu's picture

Fried some lardons in the casserole first, then fried the floured steak in the bacon fat, substituted some of the orange carrots for yellow/purple ones and a leek (didn't have parsnips), splashed the onions with red wine rather than water, 1tbsp sundried paste, 1tbsp tomato puree, 2 bay leaves, fresh rosemary & thyme in a bouquet and 45 mins into the oven time I tasted the sauce & added some balsamic vinegar and some tangy lingonberry sauce and a tbsp dark brown sugar. Divine! Made to freeze & will make the topping when this is on the menu. Can't wait! (Saving the 5th star for the topping!)

jhnaylor's picture

Made this loads of times now, and it's been great every time. It takes quite a while to prepare but it's worth it. I don't put the muffin top on as a 'top'; I shape spoonfuls of the mixture into rough dumpling shapes and drop them on top of stew then bake as per recipe. This is definitely one of our family favourites! I normally feed 2 adults and 2 children and freeze an extra portion (without the muffin/dumplings).

gnomestar's picture

This recipe is great, very warming and filling. I have made it a few times now and i do mine in my slow cooker and put the muffin top on half an hour before the end of cooking!! Yummy!! :)

hollyslb's picture
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Bloody Lovely. The muffin top was to die for!! I agree it needs a longer cooking period and it did need thickening....but other than that it was perfect!

snowden91's picture
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Delicious every time. I use beer instead of wine and add in a bit of fresh thyme and rosemary at the end of cooking and it's always great.

snowden91's picture
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Delicious every time. I use beer instead of wine and add in a bit of fresh thyme and rosemary at the end of cooking and it's always great.

chatelaineldn's picture
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Absolutely fantastic! So easy to make, including the topping, and looked really impressive. The whole family loved in and it didn't last long enough for the freezer! Will definitely be making this one again.

rachsgoodfood's picture
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This was a lovely recipe unfortunately somebody had eaten half the cheese I had put aside to make the topping (grrrr!) so I put some thyme leaves in with the remaining cheese and it was really good did struggle a little putting the topping over the stew to make it spread evenly but as it cooks and rises it covers any little gaps I'd left.

sophie110's picture

Have made this several times and its a winner every time. Sooo tasty and easy to make, especially the topping.

carltonb's picture

Completely delicious! We have a fan oven and set it at the temps midway between the suggested temps, cooked it for two hours and left it in the hot oven for a further hour, before putting the muffin top on and raising the temps. Will definitely be doing it again.

mawaheb's picture
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Amazing.. did this today and it was perfect.. the dough topping was to die for! definite family favorite..

ckandil's picture
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Very yummy stew, left the muffin topping off as served with mashed potatoes instead. Used shallots for extra sweetness.

garybulgin's picture

My first attempt at a stew and went brilliantly. I'm in my wife's goodbooks. A great dish.

sukicoop's picture
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Very tasty, very easy, added couple of sticks of celery and a splash of Balsamic Vinegar. Used self raising flour and no raising agent for the muffin. Yummy. Plenty for 4.

sinead1burke's picture

Just made this for dinner. Used ketchup as there was no tomato purée, and just beef stock. The beef stew was lovely and the muffin top was delicious! Will be making this again.

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