Real stock broth, the most important ingredient
Beef & Prune Stew
Add salt, pepper and tumeric to taste to some plain flour in a bowl.
Heat fat (lard or dripping preferable) in a frying pan.
Roll cubes of grass fed stewing beef in the seasoned flour and then drop into the hot oil, browning well on all sides (the maillard reaction).
Meanwhile, slice onions, celery, garlic and sauté in a casserol pot with butter, ghee or dripping.
Add small cubes of carrot, then add the browned beef
Splash in red wine, port or Madiera into the frying pan until it bubbles up to deglaze and pour this juice into the pot.
Add liquid – red wine or a bottle of real ale, good stock and a splash of water.
Season with bay leaves, thyme, rosemary, plenty of black pepper.
Use tamari (proper say sauce) for ummami saltiness or add several anchovies. Other ingredients which add depth of flavour include molasses, pomegranate syrup, Worcestershire sauce, dark chocolate.
Simmer with lid on for an hour or a bit more, adding a bag of pitted prunes for the last 30 minutes.
Butternut Coconut Curry
Saute lots of sliced red onions in generous amounts of ghee (or butter) and coconut oil, add sliced garlic and grated ginger and cook for another couple of minutes. Stir in ½-1 tsp each or ground tumeric, coriander seed, cumin, chilli and black pepper.
Throw in peeled and cubed butternut squash and add enough good chicken stock to almost cover. Bring to simmering point and now add tamari soy sauce for saltiness, some seasalt as well, the juice and zest of one whole lime, black pepper and a very big dollop of peanut butter or tahini, as well as a couple of handfuls of cashew nuts.
Simmer gently until tickened and the squash is cooked (30 minutes or so), then stir in a enough coconut cream to change the colour of the curry and a couple of tbspns of miso past.
Sprinkle on some cayenne powder, more lime juice and coriander leaves and serve.
Chicken & Goji Casserole
Enough for 4-8 meals:
8 organic chicken thighs or one whole chicken cut into portions
1 pint of chicken stock
A couple of glasses of red wine or a bottle of dry cider
Carrots – 2-3, cubed
Celery – 3-5 stalks, cut into 1 inch lengths
Onion – medium, diced
Shallots – 4-8, peeled (or small onions)
Seasonal veg – diced
Apricots – 8-12 (or prunes or any dried fruit)
Goji berries – a handful
A tablespoon of black strap molasses or treacle
Fresh ginger root – brazil nut sized piece, chopped
Salt and pepper
Throw all the veg into a large pan with some oil or fat on a medium heat and stir for a few minutes. The actual veg you use is up to you and can be whatever is in season. I like parsnip, celeriac, potato, yam, etc.
Lay the chicken bone side up and using a heavy or sharp knife break the bone in half (or you can use gardening secateurs).
Add the chicken and the rest of the ingredients, cover and simmer for 2 hours.