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Braised Shin of Beef with Creamy Mash

by Jo Scarratt-Jones from Eat Well For Less

Tuck into this hearty beef stew from the hit cookbook, Eat Well For Less. Served with creamy mashed potato, it makes for a warming, filling dinner that the whole family will enjoy.

From the book

Jo Scarratt-Jones, Gregg Wallace, Chris Bavin


This beef stew is definitely worth waiting for – rich and delicious and even better when made the day ahead and left to chill overnight. Just return to the hob and heat through very gently  until piping hot.

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6 tbsp rapeseed oil
2 large onions, thinly sliced
4 carrots, peeled and sliced
3 celery sticks, sliced
1/2 garlic bulb, bashed
3 tbsp plain flour, for dusting
2kg shin of beef, bone in (ask your butcher to cut it into 3cm slices)
500ml ale
300ml beef stock
3-4 springs of rosemary
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the mashed potato:
1kg floury potatoes, such as King Edward or Maris Piper, peeled and cut into 4cm cubes
150g salted butter
splash of milk or cream, to taste


Preheat the oven to 160°C/325°F/gas mark 3.

Heat a large heavy-bottomed frying pan over a medium heat, add 2 tablespoons of the oil then add the onions, carrots, celery and garlic and fry for a few minutes until they start to turn light golden brown. Transfer to a large casserole dish with a lid.

Put the flour onto a plate and season with salt and pepper. Toss the beef in the seasoned flour until coated, then shake off any excess flour. The flour is to thicken the sauce, so you don’t want too much flour in the first place or you’ll end up with a gloopy sauce.

Turn the heat up to high, then add the remaining rapeseed oil to the frying pan. Fry the beef, in batches, for 1 minute on each side until browned all over. Add the beef to the vegetables in the casserole dish.

Add a splash of the ale to the frying pan and scrape off any cooked-on pieces of food, then pour it all into the casserole dish. Pour in the remaining ale, the beef stock and rosemary. Bring to a simmer then put it in the oven and cook for 3–4 hours, or until the meat falls easily from the bone. Season to taste with sea salt and black pepper.

When there is only 30 minutes left for the beef to cook, put the potatoes into a saucepan and pour in enough water to just cover them. Add a pinch of salt then bring the pan of water to the boil. Simmer for 12–15 minutes until the potatoes are tender, then drain and return to the pan over the heat for a couple of minutes. This will drive off any excess moisture and give a lighter, fluffy mash.

Mash until smooth then stir in the butter and milk or cream. Season to taste with salt and pepper and serve with the beef shin.

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From the book: Eat Well For Less

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