Red Tractor started in 2000 and has been working hard over the past 15 years to raise awareness and standards in the industry as well as support British produce. You may be aware that they have a big campaign running until November 1st to highlight the standards behind Red Tractor and what’s more, there are also wonderful prizes to be won – on pack stickers give shoppers the chance to win a Farm Stay mini break worth £350, everyday for 49 days. You can follow the campaign on Twitter #TrustTheTractor.
- Preheat the oven to 150C (300F).
- Put the flour into a large plate and season liberally with salt and pepper. Add the beef cubes and toss until they are lightly coated in flour.
- Heat a generous glug of rapeseed oil in a large casserole dish (I used my Le Creuset). Add the beef, in batches if necessary, and brown the cubes. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside.
- Add a splash of the stock to deglaze the casserole and scrape any sticky brown bits from the bottom with a wooden spoon. Pour any liquid from the pan in with the beef.
- Add more oil to the casserole and fry the onions over medium-low heat for 5 minutes.
- Add the curry powder, cumin, garlic, carrots and celery and continue to cook for another 5 minutes.
- Stir in the tomato paste, Worcestershire sauce, stock and ale.
- Add the cinnamon stick, star anise and the browned beef. Bring to the boil, cover the casserole and place in the oven. Cook for 2 hours – checking after 1 hour to give the stew a little stir.
- Remove the casserole from the oven and transfer the stew to a large, deep, ovenproof dish to cool slightly. Remove the cinnamon stick and star anise. Check the seasoning and sprinkle with the thyme.
- Place the potatoes in a large saucepan and cover with water. Cover the pot and bring to the boil. Lower heat to a rolling simmer and cook until the potatoes are fork tender.
- Drain and return to the pot. Add the butter and milk and mash together until smooth. Add a splash more milk if the mash is too dry. Taste and season.
- Transfer the mash to a large piping bag and pipe over the stew. Sprinkle with the crumbled cheese.
- Preheat the oven to 180C (350F) and cook for about 25 minutes until the mash starts to colour a little and the middle is very hot.
- Leave the pie to cool for 10-15 minutes and serve with buttered peas and steamed green beans on the side.
Red Tractor are also hosting weekly competitions on their Facebook & Twitter to win more prizes, including £100 Aldi Voucher, £50 Cooperative vouchers, meat goody bags and much more. Be sure to check them out!