In collaboration with Lea & Perrins.
One of my best kitchen investments has been my slow cooker. It’s perfect for those days when you’re going to be busy and you don’t want to spend too much time faffing about in the kitchen.
My favourite dish to make in the slow cooker is roast beef and veg. There’s nothing better than popping this into your slow cooker first thing in the morning before spending a day hiking in the hills and returning to a house filled with the aroma of roast beef. All you need to do is whip up some mashed potatoes and thicken the gravy! Easy peasy! No basting, no watching the timer, no faff; just great food with minimal effort. You could, to save even more time, pop some potatoes in along with the veg for a simple one pot family meal.
Although slow cookers can be quite forgiving, tenderising the cheapest cuts of beef, I’ve been informed by my very lovely and helpful butcher at J.K. Mainland’s in Lerwick, Shetland (update 29/12/16 – this butchers has since closed), that rolled brisket is the ideal cut for this slow cooked dish. The resulting meat melts in the mouth and pairs perfectly with the Worcestershire flavoured gravy.
I’ve been putting a generous splash (or two, or three) of Worcestershire sauce in my slow cooker roast beef recipe for years so when Lea & Perrins contacted me offering me a sample of their product to play with and develop a recipe I jumped at the chance. It was conveniently timed too as I’d just run out!
After a few tries with different cuts of beef and types of red wine, I’ve refined my recipe. The resulting meat is tender and flavoursome and the gravy dark, rich and intensely beef flavoured without the addition of stock cubes or gravy granules, this, due in part to the good quality Shetland beef and of course, the Worcestershire sauce.
I’m a big fan of Worcestershire sauce. The intense anchovy and tamarind infused sauce enhances so many dishes, from spaghetti bolognese, to stews, casseroles, stir-fries and of course – the ultimate cheese on toast! Check out this recent video by Lea & Perrins which takes cheese on toast to the next level.
In the rare chance you might have some leftovers, here’s a few ideas to use them:
1. Leave the roast beef overnight in the fridge and thinly slice. Freeze, covered in leftover gravy and use at a later date in an open hot roast beef sandwich. Thickly slice some lovely, crusty bread, heat up the beef in gravy and pour over the top. Serve with steamed greens and potatoes on the side.
2. Roast Beef & Potato Hash – cubed cold roast beef and boiled potatoes flavoured with cumin and black mustard seeds. This dish will have you going back for thirds!
3. Meat Pies – a nostalgic childhood recipe made with my grandmother’s pastry recipe.
Edit: 29 December 2016 – I have updated this blog post with a printable recipe and a new long pin, although the photographs are still the original ones taken in 2014.
Elizabeth’s Kitchen Diary received a complimentary bottle of Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce and was paid to develop a recipe. All opinions expressed are my own.