Foodie Friday: On a cold evening pop open a bottle of red, rug up and enjoy this rich, hearty beef stew.

Prep Time: 20 mins

Cook Time: 2 hours

Serves: 4-5


  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (alternatively, use some lard or ghee)
  • 1 large brown onion, diced
  • 1 small red chill, diced finely
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 kg grass-fed beef scotch fillet or rump steak, diced into 2-cm cubes
  • ½ cup red or white wine
  • 1 tablespoon coconut amigos or Tamari soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar or lemon juice
  • ½ cup dried porcini mushrooms (optional but delicious)
  • 2 large garlic cloves, diced
  • ⅔ teaspoons ground nutmeg
  • 30 ml dry sherry, optional (that’s about 1 shot glass; dry port can also be used)
  • 3-4 fresh thyme sprigs (or 1 teaspoon dried thyme)
  • ¼ teaspoons fennel seeds
  • 1 fresh rosemary sprig (or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary)
  • 1 star anise
  • 1 litre / 4 cups of good quality beef stock or bone broth
  • 2 medium carrots, peeled and sliced
  • 2 celery sticks, peeled and sliced
  • 1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
  • 5-6 fresh button mushrooms, sliced
  • 1½ tablespoons tapioca flour or arrowroot flour
  • 2 tablespoons heavy, thick cream OR 1 tablespoon of butter (optional)


  1. Heat coconut oil in a heavy casserole pot and add the onion. Cook for 5 minutes, stirring a few times, until softened, then add the salt, chilli (if using) and pepper. Stir through.
  2. Add the beef and cook until the meat colour changes to desaturated red, about 5 minutes. Stir a few times.
  3. Add the wine, coconut amigos or Tamari sauce, apple cider vinegar (or lemon juice), dried mushrooms, garlic, sherry, thyme, fennel seeds, rosemary, star anise and nutmeg. Pour in the stock, stir and bring to a boil.
  4. Cooking part 1. Cook with a lid on, on low heat, for 1 hour 15 minutes. If using a cheaper, tougher cut of beef, increase the time to 2 hours and 15 minutes.
  5. Cooking part 2. After 1 hour and 15 minutes, add the carrots, celery, sweet potato, fresh mushrooms and cook with the lid on for 10 minutes. Then, remove the lid and cook uncovered, over medium heat for 15 more minutes. This will start the process of evaporation and thickening of the stew liquid.
  6. Finally, add a few tablespoons of the stew liquid to a cup. Add and whisk the tapioca or arrowroot flour until dissolved. Add the dissolved tapioca liquid back to the beef stew and stir. The stew will thicken. Add the cream (or butter) and stir through until glossy. Remove from heat and serve with a side of green vegetables or cauliflower rice.