Rich beef stew with whole dried lime

Beef stew

The week just gone I had a lot of conversations about the pros and cons of eating red meat. One night we had a clear divide due to various reasons. I believe that red meat is good for you with the simple rule that I eat less and better quality meat when I do, or as someone put it, “being a meat snob”, I quite like that one.

I always go to the Black Pig butchers on the weekends when I can. The meat is local, organic and it tastes wonderful. I wanted to get stuck in, I wanted to take my time, trim the meat, buy peel and chop the veg, I wanted to slow cook and fill the house with tempting cooking aromas.

Few cuts are better for this than shin of beef. Cooked right this cut will provide you with the most tender meat and cooked wrong it will be totally inedible to be honest. It needs at least four hours, five might better depending on heat and cooking method.


Beef goes with so many different flavours and the other day I bought some whole, dried lime fruits. They didn’t look like much but I had never seen any before so I had to buy some.


Whole dried lime dried lime


Beef stew

preparation time 5 mins or 15 mins if the meat isn’t trimmed

cooking time 4 hours

oven 140C or 285F

serves 6


  • 1.2 kg or 2.2 pound shin of beef or another braising part
  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered
  • 4 small leeks, trimmed but left whole
  • 2 parsnips, peeled and cut in even quite large chunks
  • peppercorn
  • 3 dried chillies, roughly chopped
  • 6 garlic cloves, peeled and lightly crushed
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp fish sauce
  • 2 tbsp Shaoxing rice wine
  • 1 tbsp mirin
  • 1 1/2 l or 7 1/2 cups of beef stock
  • 2 whole dried limes

Place all of the ingredients in an oven proof dish and place it in the oven.




Leave undisturbed for 4 hours and then check the meat.

I did have in mind to reduce the broth but it was so full of flavour I decided not to make any more changes and simply served the dish the way it was with a fork and a spoon.


Beef stew


It is a super simple dish and it can be made lighter by increasing the ratio of vegetables to meat. It cooks itself and you are rewarded with a beef stew that will only get better if allowed to sit in the fridge overnight and served the following day. The dried lime added citrus notes















5 Responses to “Rich beef stew with whole dried lime”
  1. I don’t eat a lot of red meat, but your stew looks delicious by your photos and ingredients!

  2. This is so interesting! Now I have heard of dry limes but have only seen them on occasion, in my refrigerator, lol, on the bottom of my veggie drawer, buried, and I don’t trust those!! 🙂

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