1 Large onion chopped/ or equivalent shallots
3 Cloves of garlic crushed or chopped
3 large Carrots -diced
2-3 Stems of celery-diced
3 Sprigs of fresh thyme or a couple tspn dried.
1 Beef stock gravy
1 punnet of mushrooms
700g-1kg of diced beef
Chunk of diced pancetta
1 Btl of Red wine
Some armagnac or Brandy
2 tsp Dijon mustard
Place the Beef in a plastic Ziplock with enough plain flour to coat it sufficiently and shake it about to ensure al the beef is coated. (This will help to thicken the sauce.).
Sauteé the garlic, onions, carrots, pancetta and celery with a little oil until the onions are translucent making sure not to brown them.
Add the thyme, Dijon mustard and stock cube gravy with some red wine and cook for a couple of minutes.
Empty the pan into the pre-heated slow cooker and put the lid on.
Put some oil in the pan and began to brown off the floured beef batch by batch ensuring you don’t over fill the pan. As each batch is done add to the slow cooker. This is quite a quick process and ensure you de-glaze the pan with more red wine between batches of browning . This also ensures you are cooking off the alcohol, important if kids will be eating it later on. Continue until all the beef has been added to the slow cooker and again deglaze the pan with the red wine. (YOu should ideally have used between 3/4 to a full bottle of wine at this point.
After a couple of hours…
Add a little butter to the pan and melt, add in the sliced mushrooms and cook until starting to soften, literally takes no time. Add a few dashed of Armagnac and sauteé. Add to the slow cooker. This may take you 1-2 batches as again its important not to over fill the pan. Place the lid on the slow cooker and if there’s any wine left… Drink it .
Depending on your slow cooker, you can cook on high, medium or low. It normally takes between 5-6 hours on slow but will cook faster if its on a high setting.
Serve with mashed potatoes and remember to season well to your taste.