Okay, I went a little ballistic with the ingredients in this one, but making a stew really is a good way to use up all those nearly-dead vegetables in your fridge. No prizes for guessing how fresh my veggies were.
- In a pot, toss together a knob of butter, smashed garlic, chopped fennel, diced carrots and potatoes, minced ginger, sliced chilli and a small stick of cinnamon. Fry everything till fragrant.
- Add in water to barely cover and bring to a boil.
- Meanwhile, marinate diced beef chunks with a bit of cornflour, red wine and balsamic vinegar and chopped chives. Then add to the pot as well.
- Dump in a dollop of cranberry sauce if you’ve got some, if not, a pinch of sugar will do.
- Crush in a small bunch of dried sage leaves and add a teaspoon of dark soy sauce.
- When beef is almost done, add about 2-3 mugs of meat or vegetable stock.
- Season well with salt and pepper and put the lid on. Turn the heat down to a simmer and leave it for 20-30 minutes.
- After 20-30 minutes, add in a splash of red wine.
- Make a mixture of cornflour and cold water. Then stir in the cornflour mixture a tablespoon at a time till it’s reached your desired thickness. Alternatively, you could blitz a quarter of the stew to thicken it.
- Have it with a toasty crusty bread roll.