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Ye Old Country Beef Stew served in Royal Albert’s Old Country Rose Platter

In my culinary books, Ye Old Country Beef Stew is my favourite. The recipe was once called Island Beef Stew, but I improved on it by adding certain more spices and herbs, and cheese and butter for that added fragrance and taste. Yum!

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Whipping up beef stew is actually very simple. And the best thing about stews is that different tastes from the ingredients fuse together to form a fantastic dish that warms the soul. Hmmm I wonder if stew would be considered soul food? I know Hot Chocolate is one.

When choosing beef for stews, its best if you get those sold specifically for stews. Or else you could always get the Shin area and if there are pieces with a little fat on it, it will be perfect. The fat will literally melt in your mouth when stewed. Mmmmmm=)

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Look at that beef! =)=)=)

A simple beef stew recipe is all you need to entertain and delight your guests and family. One lovable dish with lots of love in it, that is the most important ingredient of all.

Ye Old Country Beef Stew

  • 800grams of beef stew cubes or the shin area, sliced to bite size pieces
  • 3 carrots, chopped
  • 4 pieces shitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 300g can tomato puree
  • 1 300g can of button mushrooms, drained of liquid or 10 pieces large white button mushrooms, sliced
  • 4 Granola Potatoes, cubed or quatered
  • 4 pieces of Star Anise
  • 2 Cinnamon Quills
  • 2 teaspoon whole white pepper or 4 dashes of ground white pepper
  • 5 tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 Medium red onion, sliced
  • 2 pieces dried bay leaves or 3 pieces fresh bay leaves
  • 2 slices processed cheese or 2 tablespoons of cream cheese
  • 1 tablespoon salted butter
  • salt
  • cooking oil  
  • water
  • 2 tablespoons dark sweet sauce (kecap manis)
  • 2 tablespoons light soy sauce

Ok the hard part of preparing the ingredients is over, the rest is very simple.

  1. Pour the tomato puree over the beef and leave aside for 5 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a large stew pot, heat about 3 tablespoons of cooking oil. Stir fry the sliced onions until fragrant or slightly browned.
  3. Place in the beef and tomato puree into the pot and fry for another 5 minutes.
  4. Add in the carrots, both types of mushrooms, cinnamon quills, pepper, tomatoes, bay leaves and star anise. Leave to simmer for another 5 minutes.
  5. Add in 1 litre of water and cover the pot.
  6. Once half the water content has evaporated, add in the cheese and butter. Stir to melt the cheese and butter into the mix. Thereafter, add in the potatoes.
  7. Finally, add in the dark sweet sauce and light soy sauce. Leave to simmer for another 20 minutes. Add salt to taste.
  8. Serve hot with bread or rice!

Chef’s note :

  • If you find the gravy too watery, try adding a little cornstarch water to thicken it up.
  • If you like more meat in the stew, I would recommend adding back bacon bone. About 400grams will do. This will add even more to the flavour of the stew and if you do add in the back bones, don’t add any more salt and reduce the light soy sauce to 1 tablespoon.
  • The best thing about stews is you can always add more ingredient or substitute other ingredients to create your own special recipe. Try to experiment a bit and good luck =)