My super simple Slimming World friendly Beef Stifado recipe
Autumn is officially here and I’m on a mission to fill our freezer ready for those evenings when I just want to hibernate in front of the fire. This simple, slow cooked casserole is just the ticket.
A couple of years ago, we spent a blissful week with friends in Cyprus. Now, it was a first holiday with children so it was, how shall we say, a learning curve? I had a pair of fearless toddlers who had learned to walk that week and they planned on leaping into the swimming pool at any given moment. But my resounding memory of that week is laughs with friends and some seriously memorable food. Perfectly light and delicate pastries, rich, deep tomato sauces and meltingly soft meats.
In these grey autumn days, this dish takes me right back there somehow, to those hot sticky evenings, sitting in a Cypriot village square, recovering from rescuing toddlers from their very first walking adventures. Now, where can I find some Cypriot wine..?
A couple of notes on the recipe, shallots are a total pain but they are worth the faff for this recipe. Pop them unpeeled in a big bowl, pour over boiling water, leave for 10 minutes and drain. They will be a million times easier to peel – hurrah!
The cooking time will depend on the size of beef chunks. Mine were from the butcher, quite large so this batch needed 3 hours. If there’s any hint of resistance when you try to cut a piece of the meat, put the casserole back in the oven for a while. It’s worth the long cooking time.
If you can find some, this is fabulous served with orzo pasta.
I garnished the stifado with some fresh oregano as it happened to be growing in the garden, if you do have some I’d recommend it for adding a fresh finish to the dish.
- 2 Tbsp of Olive Oil (or frying spray)
- 1.5kg Beef shin pieces
- 2 Onions, peeled and sliced
- 500g Shallots, peeled
- 4 Cloves of garlic, peeled and sliced
- 1 Tbsp Mixed Spice
- 1 Tbsp Dried Oregano
- 2 Bay leaves
- 4 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar
- 2 x 400g Tins of chopped tomatoes
- Plenty of salt and pepper
- Preheat the oven to 160C.
- Pat the beef dry with kitchen roll and then fry in a hot pan, in batches in a little of the oil (or spray), until very deep brown. Don't overcrowd the pan or move the beef around too much.
- As the beef is browned, scoop it out into a bowl. If the pan is getting a bit sticky, deglaze with a little water in between batches of meat and pour those precious tasty bits of liquid in with the meat.
- When the meat is all browned, fry the sliced onions, shallots, garlic, mixed spice, oregano and bay leaves until the onions are soft.
- Add the meat back into the pan, along with the red wine vinegar, tomatoes and plenty of salt and pepper.
- Put in the oven for 2 hours (or 3 will be even better) until the meat is tender and soft. Check it half way and add a little water if the sauce is drying out..
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This recipe was commissioned for the Expedia World on a Plate Challenge. You can find more Cypriot recipe inspiration on the Expedia World on a Plate Cypriot Creations page.
You can find your own Cypriot holiday at Expedia Package Holidays to Cyprus.