6 celery sticks, thickly sliced
2 onions, chopped
3 v. large carrots, halved lengthways then sliced into thick chunks
750g new potatoes, cut into bite size chunks
5 bay leaves
3 sprigs thyme
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter
3 tbsp plain flour
2 tbsp tomato purée
2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
3 beef stock cubes, crumbled
850g stewing beef (featherblade or brisket works nicely), cut into nice large chunks
Up to 500ml vegetable stock
Heat oven to 160C/140C fan/gas 3. Put the kettle on.
Heat oil and butter in a large Dutch oven and thrown in the celery, onion, carrots, potatoes, bay leaves, and thyme sprigs. Soften for 10 mins, then stir in the flour until it’s absorbed, followed by the tomato purée, Worcestershire sauce, and beef stock cubes. Season with salt and pepper.
Gradually stir in 600ml hot water and half the stock, then tip in the beef and bring to a gentle simmer.
Cover and put in the oven for 2hrs, then check if more stock might be needed before cooking uncovered for 30mins – 1hr more until the meat is really tender and the sauce is thickened.