These dark, cold, miserable November nights require something that makes you feel warm and toasty inside and this is just the dish to do it. Gorgeous, tender slices of sweet beef, bathed in a rich, beery gravy and served with crisp, creamy Dauphinois potatoes.
1kg beef brisket, rolled and tied
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp sea salt flakes
1 tbsp freshly ground black pepper
500ml stout beer
500ml beef stock
1 bay leaf
2 red onions, sliced
5 carrots, peeled and chopped into chunks
1 tsp cornflour, mixed with a little water to form a paste
For the Dauphinois potatoes
2-4 large floury potatoes
Knob of butter
2 garlic cloves, crushed and roughly chopped
100ml double cream
Half tsp grated nutmeg
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Rub the sugar, salt and pepper all over the beef and put aside to marinate for a couple of hours.
2. Add the beer, stock, bay leaf, onions and beef to a slow cooker and cook on LOW for 4-5 hours, until the meat is very tender.
3. Remove the beef from the slow cooker and wrap in tin foil. Transfer to a warm oven until ready to carve.
4. Sieve the stock into a saucepan and add the carrots. Bring to the boil and cook until the carrots are tender, approx. 20 mins. Towards the end of cooking, add the cornflour paste and stir in to thicken the gravy.
5. Meanwhile, make the Dauphinois. Peel the potatoes and cut into 0.5cm-thick slices.
6. Rub the butter over the bottom of a shallow baking dish, then add the garlic.
7. Add the potatoes in layers, seasoning each layer liberally with salt and pepper.
8. Mix the milk, cream and nutmeg together and pour over the potatoes. Cook in the oven, preheated to 180C/Gas 4, for around 35-45 mins, until the potatoes are crisp, golden and tender.
9. Remove the beef from the tin foil and carve into thick slices.
10. Pour the carrots and gravy over the meat. Serve with the Dauphinois potatoes and buttered leeks or cabbage.