What’s not to love about mince and dumplings? This is a total northern classic that we’ve both eaten since we were kids and still love. If you like, pop the dish under the grill to brown your dumplings and give them a crunchy crust.
- 2 tbsp vegetable oil
- 1 large onion, thinly sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 2 celery sticks, finely sliced
- 2 carrots, diced
- 500g beef mince
- 400g can of chopped tomatoes
- 2 tbsp tomato purée
- 450ml beef stock
- Pinch of caster sugar
- 1 bay leaf
- Sea salt and black pepper
- For the dumplings
- 250g self-raising flour
- 125g beef suet, shredded
- ½ tsp fine sea salt
- 2 tbsp fresh parsley, finely chopped
- 1 tsp rosemary, finely chopped
- 1 tsp thyme, finely chopped
- Heat the oil in a large pan and cook the onion, garlic, celery and carrots for 15 min. Stir occasionally until the veg are softened and lightly coloured. Add the beef and cook for a further 5 minutes until the mince begins to brown, stirring regularly.
- Add the tomatoes, tomato purée, beef stock, sugar and bay leaf. Season with salt and pepper, then bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer gently for 20 min, stirring occasionally.
- To make the dumplings, put the flour in a bowl and stir in the suet, salt and herbs. Make a well in the centre and add enough cold water to make a soft, spongy dough – you’ll need about 200ml. Lightly flour your hands and roll the mixture into 12 small balls.
- Stir the mince well and remove the pan from the heat. Drop the dumplings on top of the mince, then cover with a tightly fitting lid and return the pan to a medium heat. Cook for 18–20 min or until the dumplings are well risen. Serve with some green vegetables.