Comfort food: Guinness beef stew

“Some foods are so comforting, so nourishing of body and soul, that to eat them is to be home again after a long journey. To eat such a meal is to remember that, though the world is full of knives and storms, the body is built for kindness. The angels, who know no hunger, have never been as satisfied.” ― Eli Brown, Cinnamon and Gunpowder

If it’s comfort food you’re after, this dish is just the ticket. The perfect recipe for a chilly autumn evening, this stew will definitely warm you from the inside out. It works best if left to simmer for awhile, so set aside a lazy weekend afternoon to really let it develop in flavour.

Bonus side dish suggestion: BOOKPLATE chef Nat recommends a hearty serve of creamy mashed potato!


  • 1kg diced beef chuck

  • 3 tablespoon plain flour

  • 2 diced brown onions

  • 2 tablespoons minced garlic

  • 750mL Guinness stout

  • 4 waxy potatoes, cut into large chunks

  • 2 large carrots, peeled and cut into large chunks (similar size to potatoes)

  • 1 parsnip, peeled and cut into large chunks

  • 1 cup beef stock

  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

  • ¼ cup tomato paste

  • 1 tablespoon chopped rosemary

  • 2 bay leaves

  • Salt and pepper to taste


  1. Toss the beef in the flour and set aside.

  2. Fry the bacon in a large fry pan and remove from pan. Set aside.

  3. Brown off the beef in the same pan with juices from the bacon, cooking in batches if necessary.

  4. Transfer meat and bacon to a heavy duty stock pot.

  5. Brown off the onions with the garlic in the fry pan, followed by the rest of the vegetables. Add to the stockpot.

  6. Deglaze the fry pan with the Guinness, then add to the stock pot with the meat and vegetables.

  7. Add the beef stock, Worcestershire sauce, tomato paste, rosemary and bay leaves to the pot, stirring well to combine.

  8. Bring to the boil then simmer for about 1 and ½ hours, or until the meat is tender.

  9. Serve with your favourite side.

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