Cheap Eats 3: Beef and Beer casserole

For a guy who’s just moved out of home beef and beer are a pretty sweet combination. This is why this recipe has made it into Jason’s cheap eats collection. For me this recipe is more a base with a lot of variations. I’ve included a few at the bottom. You don’t have to use beer if it breaks the budget. However, I think beer has it’s own budget.

a splash of oil
some flour if you’ve got some
2kg of cheap stewing steak (ask the butcher for that!) or stewing Kangaroo ($10/kg)
garlic (chopped or whole cloves)
2 onions
any or all of the following: carrots, parsnips, turnips, celery all peeled and cut into equals size pieces (check the old veggie section at work, they sometimes pack these as ‘soup mix)
1 can of tomatoes
1 can/stubbie of beer (something dark such as coopers dark is best)
1 cup of beef stock or water

In a big pot heat the oil to medium. The pan is hot enough when you see the oil move a bit
Dust the meat in salt and pepper and flour if you’ve got some and brown it, handfuls at a time. Once each lot it browned remove it from the pot, until all is cooked.

Add in a bit more oil if the pot is dry and cook your onions until soft.

Throw in the rest of the veggies and garlic and turn the heat down. Pop a lid on for a few minutes until the carrots start to soften.

Splash in the booze and use a wooden spoon to scrape all the cooked on bits off the bottom of the pot. Increase the heat a bit until the liquid bubbles for a minute or two.

Throw the meat back in, along with everything else. Put the lid back on and turn down to the lowest temperature. Simmer for 2 hours. If you’ve got really cheap meat it might take longer.

If your saucepan doesn’t have any wooden or plastic bits (handles etc), pop it in the oven for the 2 hours instead at 150ºC/280ºF

Variations:
RED WINE SAUCE: Replace the beer with 1/2 glass of red wine and some tinned tomatoes.
OR
Red Curry: Don’t flour and season the meat and replace the beer and stock with coconut milk and add in some red curry paste

About Michelle

Michelle is passionate about showing people how easy it is to prepare food that is healthy and packed full of flavour. She has just completed her first recipe book, Healthy Helpings: fast food for fit physiques. She began sharing her love of food in 2007, when she produced two series of the online cooking show ‘Healthy Helpings TV’, making fast food healthy and healthy food fast. In 2008 she competed in bodybuilding as a novice figure shaping competitor and she remains passionate about physique sports. She was a 2009 Australian Masterchef semi-finalist, and contributes articles to Oxygen Magazine Australia. Michelle lives with her husband on the Fleurieu Peninsula in South Australia, where she loves to search out new ingredients and food ideas from local farmers markets, health food shops and ethnic grocers, and take her two dogs on long rambles through the vineyards. Find out more about Michelle's book