I saw this idea on a Jamie Oliver programme a while ago now – but I cannot remember which one! Anyway, this is my version using fabulously underrated shin beef – mine was from those lovely people at Parsonage Farm. I love the tactile nature of rubbing the beef in the early stages and the way this cut just melts in the mouth after serious slow cooking. We went to the pub whilst it was simmering! It suited our Sunday and slipped down a treat – highly recommended and great social food. I cooked it in a Dutch oven casserole pan – I know some folk cook it in a tagine – but I have never dabbled in those – yet. Anyway – this works and I have just finished the leftover warmed up inside a pitta for lunch today!
Ingredients for 4/5
750 gm shin beef, fat trimmed off and cut into serious cubes
2 small onions chopped
Bunch of fresh coriander
Half a butternut squash peeled and cubed
400 gm tin chickpeas
400 gm tin chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp of tomato sauce
600 ml of chicken or vegetable stock
1 tbsp garam masala
1 tbsp ground cinnamon
1 tbsp ground cumin – I crushed cumin seeds in a mortar
1 tbsp ground ginger
1 tbsp paprika
Salt and black pepper
Mix all spice ingredients together and add to cubed beef in a bowl – with your hands run in to the beef until all the mix has been taken in. You can do this in advance if you wish.
Add a glug of olive oil to the pan – deep sided preferably – and gently pan fry the beef for about 5 minutes. Add the onion and half the coriander chopped. Fry for a further 5 minutes. Add the chickpeas and the tomatoes and then all apart form 100 gm of the stock – you are just keeping some back for later in case it starts to dry out a tad – but it shouldn’t.
Bring to the boil – stir well – reduce heat – pop some foil over then the lid and simmer for 2 hours on a low heat.
Then add the butternut squash cubes – a little more stock if needed. Put foil and lid back on.
Cook for another 1 and a half hours. Consistency should now be quite thick and the meat should be falling apart to the touch. Serve with cous cous and scatter on the remainder of the coriander.
This is a very satisfying autumnal dish – cheap too – and a great alternative to Sunday roasts!