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Mam's classic panaculty

Panaculty is a casseroled dish, traditional throughout the North East of England; especially associated with Sunderland, Tyne & Wear and County Durham. It been in my family for generations, it the super one pot wonder for warming up your cold evenings.

SERVES 6

This was a wartime ration when corned beef and potato were cheap. the recipe is still being cooked by my family today as it's simple and tasty; just repeating layers of sliced corned beef, onions, potato, mixed vegetables, adding a pint of bistro gravy and slow cooking it, nothing fancy about it... but the flavours are amazing.

INGREDIENTS

For the panaculty:

- 1 tbsp olive oil

- 6 potatoes, peeled and sliced

- 2 corn beef tins (250g to 300g)

- 2 white onions, sliced

- 1 tin of mixed vegetables (carrots, peas)

- pinch salt

- pinch pepper

- 900ml beef stock

- 2 tbsp HP brown sauce

- 25g butter

 

For the parsley dumpings:

- 125g plain flour

- 1 tsp baking powder

- pinch salt

- 60g suet

- 1/4 fresh parsley, chopped

- fresh milled black pepper

- milk to bind the dumplings together

METHOD

  • FOR THE PANACULTY: Heat the oven to 375 F / 190 C.

  • Pour some olive oil into a large casserole dish or ovenproof frying pan and gently cook the sliced onions until soft, but not browned, on medium heat, remove onions from pan.

  • Arrange a layer of sliced corned beef at the base of the pan, then add onions, potatoes and mixed vegetables and season.

  • Repeat these layers until you have reached the top.

  • Add 2 tbsp of HP brown sauce to the beef stock and pour over the layers of corn beef and vegetables.

  • Place the pan over medium heat and bring to the boil.

  • Place in the heated oven and bake for 1.5 hours

  • FOR THE PARSLEY DUMPLINGS: About 15 minutes before the end of cooking, make the dumplings; mix the flour, baking powder, salt and pepper and parsley in a bowl.

  • Then, mix in the suet also add enough milk to mix to a firm dough that leaves the bowl clean.

  • Shape into dumplings.

  • TO SERVE: Once the panaculty is completely cooked, place the dumplings on the top, cover with cheese and put the pot in the oven for 15 minutes to crisp the dumplings up.

Alternatively, cook the dumplings separately in stock and then place them on top of the panaculty before serving.