Beef casserole with horseradish and mustard (#70)

There is some serious drama in my backstory for this one. Serious drama. I tried to make this two years ago. Stupidly tried to do it after work. Hours later, while tired, impatient and hungry I accidentally tipped the whole thing over on the kitchen floor. There was a rather comic (read tragic) moment of silence as Sous Chef Nik and I looked at other, while three hours of work slowly spread over our kitchen floor.

Needless to say I was angry. No, not angry. I was apoplectic. (I actually think on the surface I handled it quite well but under the surface I was raging). So at 10pm on a work night I was ordering a Chinese takeaway to make up for my loss. Only now has the pain rescinded enough for me to consider returning to Mary Berry’s Absolute Favourites to finish what I started those many months ago.

I’m sure you’ll all be glad to hear that it is a superb dish, and was well worth returning to. I think horseradish and mustard does divide opinion in some respects but I absolutely adore those flavours as they tickle your taste buds. It peaked interest when I reheated it at work, so assume the smell alone definitely gits the spot!

Good things: some of my favourite flavours!

Bad things: emphatically not a weeknight meal.

Ingredients & requirements: serves 4-ish

  • 3 tablespoon of Sunflower oil
  • 800 kg of diced braising beef
  • 2 onions
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • 35g plain flour
  • 200ml of white wine
  • 200ml of beef stock
  • 2 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce
  • 0.5 tablespoon of light muscovado sugar
  • 250g chestnut mushrooms
  • 2 tablespoon of dijon mustard
  • 2 tablespoon of horseradish sauce (creamed)
  • 2 tablespoon of double cream
  • 0.5 tablespoon of parsley

Preparation & cooking

Preparation

  1. Prepare 200ml of beef stock in a small saucepan. I’d measure out just a little more water than you need.
  2. Roughly chop the 2 large onions, set aside in a medium bowl.
  3. Crush 4 garlic clove, set aside.
  4. Measure the 35g of flour into a pyrex and slowly add around 60ml of the white wine while mixing so it combines well.

Cooking

  1. Heat 2 tablespoons of sunflower oil in a large frying pan
  2. Cook the 800g of diced beef over a high heat for about 5 mins. Use a slotted spoon to set it aside in a sizeable bowl or plate.
  3. Add 1 tablespoon of sunflower oil to the pan. Turn down the heat very slightly to medium-high.
  4. Tip in the onions & garlic, stir well for 5 mins to soften the onions. Don’t let them then burn!
  5. Now return the beef to the pan.  Then add the flour-white wine mixture to the casserole. Then I’d add the rest of the wine (around 140ml or so) and the 200ml of beef stock. Stir until thickened.
  6. Add the following, bring the casserole to a boil boil:
    1. 2 tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce
    2. 5 tablespoon of light muscovado sugar
    3. Season with Salt & pepper
  7. Once boiling, cover and cook on a low heat for 2 hours
  8. Half the 250g of chestnut mushrooms, then add them to the mix. Bring back to the boil, cover then simmer for another 30 mins.
    1. (Chop up some parsley at this stage so you’re ready to garnish)
  9. Right at the end, mix the following in a small bowl then stir into the casserole:
    1. 2 tablespoon of dijon mustard
    2. 2 tablespoon of creamed horseradish sauce
    3. 2 tablespoon of double cream
  10. Serve and garnish with the parsley

Reflections:

When you look at this recipe it really is rather simple. Seal the beef, build up the basae layer flavours, create the main sauce and add the mushrooms and standout flavours near the end.

As you can see I served this with rice, because it’s far easier for me to reheat at work than mashed potato. But in a dinner party scenario I’d definitely make mash, preferably my mustard mash, that I will publish another time. On the dinner party point, I think this would work really well as you have a whole two hour period of doing almost nothing, so you can get this started a good hour or so before anyone arrives and be the graceful un-flustered host for your guests as they enter an almost clean kitchen.

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