Brisket has a wonderful flavour and texture when cooked to tender perfection in a rich stew with fluffy dumplings.
For the dumplings
55g/2oz fresh suet, finely chopped, or 85g/3oz shredded suet
175g/6oz plain flour, plus extra for dusting
1 tsp salt
½ tsp baking powder
1 tsp horseradish sauce (optional)
1 handful fresh parsley, chopped (optional)
dash milk or water
For the beef stew
2kg/4½lb beef brisket
3 onions, thickly sliced
3 carrots, thickly sliced
1 celery stick, cut into 2cm/1in pieces
350g/12oz potatoes, cut into chunks
1 bay leaf
6 sprigs fresh parsley
water or beef stock, to cover the meat
For the dumplings, mix the suet, flour, salt and baking powder together in a bowl and stir in the horseradish and parsley, if using. Gradually add milk or water to the mixture, mixing well to form a soft dough. With floured hands, roll small pieces of the dough into dumpling-sized balls. Set aside.
For the stew, place the beef brisket into a large saucepan and scatter around the onions, carrots, celery, potatoes, bay leaf and parsley. Add enough water or beef stock to cover, then bring to the boil.
Cover with a lid, reduce the heat to its lowest and simmer for at least 1-2 hours, or until the meat is tender. Add the dumplings to the stew 20 minutes before the stew is finished cooking. Cover with a lid and do not lift again until the end of the cooking time, or until the dumplings are cooked through. To serve, spoon the stew and dumplings into bowls.
Source: BBC FOODS