1 tablespoon sunflower oil
750 g (12 lb) braising beef, trimmed of fat and cubed
1 large onion, sliced
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 tablespoons plain flour
450 ml (4 pint) beef stock
4 tablespoons soy sauce
4 tablespoons wine vinegar
1 tablespoon caster sugar
2 bay leaves
juice of 1 lime
salt and pepper
boiled long-grain rice, to serve
1 carrot, cut into thin sticks
½ bunch of spring onions, cut into shreds
coriander leaves


1.Preheat the slow cooker if necessary. Heat the oil in a large frying pan and add the beef a few pieces at a time until all the meat is in the pan.
2.Fry over a high heat, turning, until evenly browned, lift out of the pan with a slotted spoon and transfer to a plate.
3.Add the onion to the pan and fry for 5 minutes or until it is just beginning to brown.
4. Mix in the garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Stir in the flour, then gradually mix in the stock. Add the soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, bay leaves and salt and pepper and bring to the boil, stirring.
5.Transfer the beef to the slow cooker pot, pour over the onion and stock mixture, cover with the lid and cook on low for 8-10 hours.
6.Stir in lime juice to taste and garnish with the carrot sticks, shredded spring onions and coriander leaves. Serve in shallow bowls lined with rice.
7.FOR HOISIN BEEF, combine 3 tablespoons each soy sauce and rice or wine vinegar with 2 tablespoons hoisin sauce and 2.5 cm (1 inch) piece of peeled and finely chopped fresh root ginger.
8.Add this mixture to the beef stock with the sugar. Omit the bay leaves.
9.Bring the mixture to the boil, then continue as above, adding the lime juice just before serving.

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