food: Guinness stew with celeriac

Posted on November 13, 2005

The are probably 10^2 variations of this recipe in circulation and here’s mine, for the record:

3 or 4 red onions, roughly chopped
4 cloves of garlic, chopped
3 or 4 carrots, chopped
half a decent celeriac, cut into 1.27 cm cubes
1 kg steak pieces, cut into bitesize chunks
some freshly ground coriander seed, a teaspoonful
Guinness (500 ml), Murphy’s or Beamish would do at a stretch
some seasoned flour [1]

Sweat the onions and garlic in a heavy oven-proof pot with a little olive oil. Lid on or off, it’s up tp you. Dip the steak pieces in the seasoned flour, shake off the excess. Brown the steak pieces on a very hot oiled skillet in batches; plenty of charring and general spattering will occur. This is good as it adds some flavour. Set these on top of the sweated onions and garlic and add a can of Guinness, a splash of balsamic vinegar (dessertspoonful), a splash of Worcestershire Sauce (teaspoonful), all other ingredients and possibly some water if the liquid looks scant. Cover the pot and put into a slow oven for a long time.[2]

Serve with carbs of your own choice (spuds work well). Enjoy.

[1] I tend to go quite heavy on the flavours in seasoned flour – it is seasoned after all. I’d generally add quite a lot of freshly milled pepper, a little salt, some mustard, possibly some curry powder, possibly not, definitely some berbere or medium chili powder if you don’t have berbere. This gives quite a kick to the stew, not as in a Mexican chili kick, but a pleasnat heating sensation, good for winter evenings. I also like thyme in casseroles like this a lot, but this can be added at the onion stage instead.

[2] I use the faster oven in the Aga for about an hour and then transfer to the slower oven for as long as it takes – three hours, four, five – it won’t come to any harm. In a conventional oven, start off at 150 C for an hour and then reduce to maybe 125C for the balance. You may need to add a little water.