Slow Cooked Beef With Irish Cider - Dan Kellys Cider
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Slow Cooked Beef With Irish Cider

Slow Cooked Beef With Irish Cider

When you think of dishes that are traditionally associated with cider beef is one that doesn’t come to mind and no manner of promoting is likely to help you make that association.

Caroline Hennessey, of Bibliocook, recently wrote a great recipe, with an amusing back story, which involved cooking a piece of beef, long and slow, using Irish craft cider as the braising liquid. The end result?  Meat that her and her family were able to “pull apart with a fork and pile it, together with a good dollop of the gorgeous gravy, on top of some buttery mashed potatoes.” Sounds amazing!

Her “experiment” worked so well that she has repeated this cider and beef combination with small cuts of meat.

So that’s next Sunday’s roast sorted!

When to comes to selecting a cider for this go for something dry or medium, the likes of Bulmers you don’t want! Of course, we are biased and are going to mention our own cider but there are many other great craft Irish ciders on the market. Buy a few so that you can try pairing the cider with your lunch. The following serves seven adults and two children and the leftovers make great sandwiches.

Slow Cooked Beef with Irish Cider


2 tablespoons olive oil
1.5kg beef – round roast works well
4 cloves garlic, sliced
2 onions, sliced
3 carrots, sliced lengthways
2 sticks celery, chopped
500mls Dan Kelly’s cider
250mls water
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons applesauce or unsweetened stewed apple
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
2 bay leaves
3 star anise
2 sprigs thyme
Salt and pepper
Dijon mustard


Preheat oven to 150C (130C fan).

Season the beef with salt and pepper. Add the oil to an oven-proof casserole dish, heat in the oven, add the beef and cook until browned on all sides.

Add the vegetables and cook over medium heat, stirring for two to three minutes. Cover the pan and cook for another 5-10 minutes until vegetables have browned and slightly caramelised.

Pour in the cider, water, applesauce, Worcestershire sauce and tomato paste, stir well and simmer. Return the beef to the pan, along with any juices, and tuck in the bay leaves, star anise and thyme.

Place covered dish into the oven and cook at 150C for about four hours or until the meat is falling apart. Baste every hour or so with the juices in the pan, adding more water if necessary.

Remove from the oven and leave to rest, along with the slow roasted vegetables. Skim any fat off the juices, taste and add some mustard, Worcestershire sauce or seasoning as necessary and pour into a warm gravy bowl. Cut or pull the meat apart and serve with mashed or baked potato, horseradish sauce, and vegetables of your choice.

A bit more about Caroline from Bibliocook

I am a freelance journalist and broadcaster. I presented (with chef Kevin Thornton) a six-part radio series called Foodtalk, have appeared on Dave Fanning’s, Derek Mooney‘s and Tom Dunne‘s programmes, and am a regular contributor of delicious audio treats to Lyric fm’s Culture File. I have written, and write for, a variety of publications including Intermezzo, Food and Wine Magazine, the Irish Examiner and the Irish Times.

I am a co-founder of the Irish Food Bloggers Association, do marketing/pr for Eight Degrees Brewing, am a former barista, a constant baker and a McKennas’ Guides editor.