This weather makes me want to eat delicious warming stews, so I thought I’d better make myself one!

I took a selection of vegetables, see photo. I’ve got onion, leeks, potatoes, carrots, parsnips, swede, butternut squash, garlic, mushrooms, some nice fresh thyme and, bizarrely, a punnet of cherry tomatoes that were sat in the fridge doing nothing.

Put a nice big pan on the heat with some oil and start adding the vegetables as you chop them up. Start with the onions and garlic so they soften before adding the others. Make sure they’re cut up into similar sized pieces.

When you’ve added them all, add some flavourings. I had the fresh thyme. Rosemary is always good, fresh or dry. I also add some freshly ground black pepper and a sprinkling of a good vegan Worcester sauce.

Add liquid to almost cover the vegetables and bring to the boil. Cover and let it simmer while you prepare the dumplings. For the liquid, this time I used some bouillon powder and water. Sometimes a little white wine is good too.

Now onto the important part of the meal. The dumplings! Mix about 4oz self raising flour with 2oz vegetable suet and some flavouring. Today I added smoked paprika and pepper. Herbs are always a good bet of course.

Add enough cold water to bind together so it isn’t too wet. Divide this amount into 8 and roll into balls. Place them on top of the simmering stew and cover with the lid and cook for another 20 mins. It is imperative that the lid is a good tight fit and you do not lift it until dumplings are cooked. If you do, they will not cook properly.

Serve and enjoy.

I had lots left over for lunches, see if you can spot them over the next few weeks!

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