Given this is the season to eat it, and Wendy has been asking how to make dumplings, what about Stew??
How do you make yours?
It is an intensely regional thing in the UK and always was a subject of debate among my mother's friends when I was young.
"Well, I make mine like this" was always a gossip topic over a cuppa during the winter months.
Mine is very simple.
In a large pot I add the following:
Stewing beef pieces
Onions, Carrots, swede, turnips and or parsnips.
Salt and pepper
Dumplings - 100g flour, 50g suet, salt and pepper and water to bind.
I cover all the ingredients EXCEPT the potatoes with water and bring to the boil, skimming any off the meat scum that rises to the surface.
I reduce the heat and gently boil for about 3 hours.
About half an hour before the end of the cooking time, I gently bring the potatoes to boil and cook for about 15-20 minutes. I drain them and gently add them to the stew just prior to serving.
Likewise I make a dumpling paste of half fat to flour , salt pepper and enough water to form into small balls and add these to the stew about 20 minutes before serving - 100g of flour is usually what I use.
I think the biggest point of debate is that I serve is with the cooking liquor which is very thin - some people like it thicker - it's all a matter of personal taste.
So, how do you cook yours????