Cooking with Denise: Seder night beef stew

Cooking with Denise: Seder night beef stew

Denise Phillips cooks up a recipe for your seder night meal

Denise Phillips is a Jewish cook and author

Seder night beef stew

That special main course seder night meal has to tick certain criteria; slow long cooking so food will not spoil, can be prepared in advance, uses readily available ingredients, easy to serve for large numbers, requires few kitchen utensils and, above all, will be thoroughly enjoyed by the whole family!

This recipe covers all these requirements and uses horseradish and parsley, the symbolic seder night ingredients, which you will no doubt have in your cupboards. The addition of dates adds a little natural sweetness to harmonise the overall combined flavours.

I like to serve it with either mashed or fondant potatoes.


  1. Preheat the oven to 170°C/ 325°F/ Gas mark 3.
  2. Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Sauté the beef until brown and the onions until softened and golden but not burnt. This will take about 10 minutes.
  3. Transfer to a large ovenware dish. Add the parsnips, carrots, wine, stock, dates, horseradish sauce and parsley and season with salt and pepper.
  4. Cover with foil and cook for a minimum of three hours.


  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3kg shin of beef cut into 4cm pieces
  • 5 onions – peeled and sliced
  • 4 large parsnips – peeled and cut into chunky wedges
  • 4 large carrots – peeled and cut into chunky wedges
  • 200ml red wine
  • 500ml beef stock – 500ml hot water with 2 tablespoons beef stock
  • 150g stoned dates
  • 3 tablespoons horseradish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons parsley – roughly chopped
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Garnish: Sprigs of parsley – finely chopped

Serves 8 – Preparation time 25 minutes, cooking time 3 hours 15 minutes


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