Easy Recipes

Flemish Beef Stew


2 tbs olive oil
1kg chuck steak, cubed
2 onions, thickly sliced
375ml dark beer
250ml beef stock
2 tbs brown sugar
2 cloves
2 bay leaves
2 sprigs rosemary
2 sprigs thyme
2 slices soft white or wholemeal bread
2 tbs Dijon mustard
2 tbs balsamic vinegar

Flemish beef stew

You’ll need a large pot for this recipe — a cast iron Dutch oven if you have one, otherwise any large pot with a lid. Alternatively, cook the stew in a slow cooker once you’ve browned the beef and onions.

  • Heat the olive oil and brown the beef well over medium heat (do this in small batches). Remove each batch of meat once it’s browned and set aside.
  • Add the onions to the pot (with a little more oil if needed). Slowly cook, stirring occasionally, until they are translucent and starting to caramelise.
  • Return the beef to the pan and pour in the dark beer. Add the stock, brown sugar, cloves, bay leaves, rosemary and thyme.
  • Spread the mustard on the bread and place the slices, mustard side down, on top of the stew (the bread will melt into the stew during cooking and serve as a thickener).
  • Reduce the heat to low, place the lid on the pot and simmer for 1-2 hours (until the beef is tender, time will vary slightly depending on the cut of beef). Check from time to time that the beef is not drying out and add a little more stock or water if needed.
  • When the beef is nice and tender and the sauce has thickened, turn off the heat and remove the rosemary and thyme stalks and the bay leaves.
  • Stir in the balsamic vinegar.
  • Serve with your favourite roasted vegetables, or do as the Belgians do and enjoy with a side of chunky fries.