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Slow Cooker Beef Stew & Herb Dumplings

Slow Cooker Beef Stew & Dumplings – the perfect comfort food! A delicious beef stew loaded with vegetables cooked in your Crock Pot & topped with herb dumplings for a hearty one pot meal. A timeless classic you’ll never tire of.

Having been spoilt with warm days well into November makes the cooler turn in the weather a bit of a shock to the system. I think after the arrival of frost it’s definitely time to start eating comforting hearty meals like stews. My mum would make a beef stew almost every week, not least because it was economical – a small amount of a cheap cut of meat would stretch a long way with all those vegetables. My mum didn’t have a slow cooker back then, so the stew would be on a low light on the hob for most of the day. When I got married I carried on the tradition of a weekly stew, making it in the slow cooker we had as a wedding present – money was tight so we even had stew pie later in the week. Over the years we’ve lost the weekly stew tradition here at the Kitchen Shed but every now and then, when the weather turns, we have a humble delicious beef stew, with dumplings of course.

The slow cooker is perfect for transforming chewy, hard working cuts of meat into melting, flavourful tenderness. For this recipe I’ve used only 400g of chuck steak so it is very easy on the pocket. A note on cooking the meat – for me, browning the meat is essential. You can just throw everything into the slow cooker but it really is worth browning (brown the vegetables as well since you’re using a pan for the meat) to get all the delicious caramelised depth of flavours. I’ve used carrots, onions and potatoes, items I’d got on the pantry shelf, but feel free to use any root vegetables.

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Slow Cooker Beef Stew & Herb Dumplings
 
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Slow Cooker Beef Stew & Dumplings – the perfect comfort food! A delicious beef stew loaded with vegetables cooked in your Crock Pot & topped with herb dumplings for a hearty one pot meal. A timeless classic you’ll never tire of.
Author:
Recipe type: Main
Cuisine: Slow Cooker
Serves: 4 to 6
Ingredients

Stew
  • 400g stewing steak cut into cubes (I used chuck steak)
  • 6 tablespoons plain flour
  • A pinch of salt and plenty of pepper
  • 4 tablespoons rapeseed oil
  • 2 large onions - sliced
  • 4 carrots sliced into chunks
  • 4 medium potatoes cut into chunks
  • 1 bayleaf
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 tablespoon tomato puree
  • 1 tablespoon Worcester sauce
  • 750 ml (3 cups) beef stock

Dumplings
  • 110 g (3/4 cup) plain flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 50 g (2 oz) shredded suet or grated hard white vegetable fat coated with a tablespoon of rice flour
  • 1 tablespoon freshly chopped parsley
  • 4 to 6 tablespoons of water
Instructions

Make your stew:
  1. Lightly grease the inside of your slow cooker with oil or cooking spray and turn your slow cooker on high.
  2. Add salt and pepper to your flour and coat the beef chunks before setting to one side.
  3. Heat the oil in a large frying pan on a medium heat.
  4. Brown the onions and carrots before transferring them to your slow cooker.
  5. Add the floured beef chunks to your frying pan and brown well before adding to the slow cooker.
  6. Add any remaining flour to your pan and cook out in the oil before deglazing the pan with the beef stock, stir well to avoid any lumps.
  7. Pour into your slow cooker and add the potatoes, herbs, tomato puree and Worcester sauce, stir well and place on the slow cooker lid.
  8. Cook on low for 10 hours or on high for 6 hours.

Make your dumplings:
  1. Sieve the flour and baking powder into a bowl and stir in the suet or vegetable fat.
  2. Add 4 tablespoons of water and stir again to form a dough, adding extra water if necessary.
  3. Divide the dough into 8 pieces and turn out onto a floured work surface.
  4. Shape into small balls and add to your slow cooker and cook on high for 45 minutes with the lid on.

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Slow Cooker Beef Stew & Dumplings - the perfect comfort food! A delicious beef stew loaded with vegetables cooked in your Crock Pot & topped with herb dumplings for a hearty one pot meal. A timeless classic you'll never tire of.

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