Beef and barley casserole

This recipe is ideal for cooking ahead - most stews and casseroles benefit from a night in the fridge as the flavours really get a chance to develop.

  • Preparation time: 10 minutes
  • Cooking time: 2 hours 15 minutes
  • Total time: 2 hours 25 minutes

Serves: 6


Extra virgin olive oil spray
800g Aberdeen Angus diced braising steak
1 large onion, roughly chopped
2 sticks celery, roughly chopped
1 large carrot, cut into cubes
1 tbsp Cooks’ Ingredients Sundried Tomato Paste
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
200ml red wine
1 beef stock cube
1 tsp peppercorns, lightly crushed
400g can chopped tomatoes
3 thyme sprigs
2 bay leaves
75g Waitrose LOVE Life pearl barley
2 tbsp cider vinegar
Large handful of parsley, chopped
Seasonal vegetables, such as greens or cabbage, to serve


1. Spray a large casserole with olive oil spray and warm over a high heat. Add the beef, in batches, and cook until brown. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.

2. Add the onion, celery, carrot and a splash of water to the casserole and fry for 3-4 minutes until softened. Add the sundried tomato paste and garlic and fry for a further minute.

3. Return the beef to the casserole, pour in the wine, then add the stock cube, peppercorns, 500ml boiling water, the chopped tomatoes, thyme and bay leaves. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer over a low heat for 1 ½ hours.

4. Add the pearl barley and simmer for a further 30 minutes until the beef and barley are very tender. Stir in the vinegar and parsley. Great served with buttered greens or cabbage.