I like to use large chunks of meat when I'm stewing or braising. To start with, the meat cooks better, there's less shrinkage and, you know, there's something rather nice about having big chunks of beef on your plate.
Pre-heat the oven to 150°C, Gas Mark 2, 302°F.
Heat 1tbsp of sunflower oil in a large casserole dish until hot. Add the onion and garlic and sweat over a high heat for 10-15 minutes, stirring constantly until softened but without browning.
Meanwhile, heat a large, heavy-based frying pan. It's always helpful to have a thick-based pan to help the meat brown. Thin pans tend to scorch the meat instead of letting it caramelize. Add the remaining sunflower oil, heat through, and then add the beef in 2 batches to the pan, frying until browned on all sides, around 5-10 minutes. I'm doing this to render the fat out, get the beef nice and brown and give it lots of flavour.
Add the browned beef to the fried onion mixture. Pour in the Guinness® and the prune juice. Add the Knorr Rich Beef Stock Pot, stirring until dissolved. Adding the Knorr Rich Beef Stock Pot gives a great flavour to this dish. Bring the dish to the boil, cover and transfer to the pre-heated oven to cook for 4 hours, stirring halfway through.
Meanwhile, prepare the garnish. Place the prunes in a pan of cold water, bring to the boil, drain, refresh in cold water and drain again. Place the bacon lardons in a pan of cold water, bring to the boil, drain, refresh in cold water and drain again.
About 10 minutes before the beef has completed its time in the oven, heat a frying pan until hot. Add the olive oil and heat through. Fry the bacon, stirring often, until crispy. Add the prunes and heat through.
Remove the casserole dish from the oven. Transfer the beef into a serving dish, pouring over the casserole juices. Garnish generously with the fried prunes and bacon lardons and serve at once.
Chef's tip from Marco Pierre White
A lot of people cook beef in Guinness®. My beef stew recipe uses prune juice with the Guinness®, so that the bitterness of the Guinness® is balanced by the sweetness of the prune juice. Using a Knorr Rich Beef Stock Pot gives the great richness of flavour you want in a stew. This recipe for beef with Guinness®, and an extra ingredient that makes all the difference, creates a rich and flavourful beef casserole - that's so simple to make.
Click here to watch the video on how to make Beef and Guinness stew