1kg beef joint
2 celery stalks, diced
2 carrots, diced
1 onion, diced
750ml beef stock
2 x 400g tinned chopped tomatoes
4 bay leaves
couple springs thyme, rosemary or a handful of sage leaves
10 black peppercorns
Optional: for extra vegetables add chopped up courgette and aubergine
- Pre-salt the beef the day before cooking and leave in the fridge. Use 4 tsp. of kosher salt per 1kg of beef.
- Seal the beef. I've recently been using a newly purchased skillet and it is so much easier than sealing in a pan.
- In a large pot add a glug of olive oil and soften the celery, carrots and onion.
- Add the bay leaves, herb of choice and peppercorns.
- Make a well and add the beef.
- Pour in the stock and add the tinned tomatoes, give a good stir.*
- Bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to lowest setting and cover with a lid.
- Leave to simmer for around 3 hours, stir occasionally.
- Remove beef from the pot, transfer to a serving dish and cover with foil.
- There will be a lot of sauce, pour off enough for your meal into a pan. Thicken with cornflour if needed.
- Leave the rest of the sauce to cool, it can be bagged up and frozen - a quick pasta sauce for midweek meals.
- Add cooked pasta to the sauce, stir through.
- Slice the beef, it will be really tender and fall apart.
- Serve pasta, add beef on top and garnish with cheese.
- Serve the beef and sauce on a bed of mashed potatoes or polenta.
* alternatively at this stage you could transfer everything into a slow cooker, with 400ml of stock and cook on high for 4 hours or on low for 8 hours. Simply pull the beef apart.