Beef and Madeira Casserole

An elegant beef casserole, this dish is ideal to serve for a dinner party. Boiled new potatoes and broccoli or spinach may accompany this dish.

2 oz. flour

½ teaspoon salt

2 teaspoon black pepper

2 lb. beef fillet or lean beef sirloin, cut into thin strips lj oz. butter

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1 large onion, finely chopped

3 shallots, finely chopped

2 lb. button mushrooms, sliced

16 fl. oz. beef stock

2 lb. tomatoes, blanched, peeled, seeded and finely chopped

4 fl. oz. Madeira

4 fl. oz. sour cream

Preheat the oven to moderate 350 F (Gas Mark 4, 180’C).

In a large bowl, mix the flour with the salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Toss the beef strips in the flour mixture to cover completely and shake off any excess seasoned flour.

Heat the butter and oil in a large, heavy frying-pan over high heat. Add the beef strips and cook for 3 minutes, shaking the pan to brown the meat on all sides. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the beef to a medium-sized ovenproof casserole.

Lower the heat and add the chopped onion and shallots to the frying-pan. Stirring occasionally, saute them for 5 minutes.

Add the mushrooms to the pan and cook for 3 minutes more.

Remove the frying-pan from the heat and spoon the mushroom mixture over the beef in the casserole. Add the beef stock, tomatoes and Madeira to the casserole. Add the remaining pepper and, if necessary, add more salt.

Cover the casserole and cook in the oven for 45 minutes.

To serve, spoon the beef and gravy on to warmed plates. Hand individual por-tions of sour cream for each person.

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