Winter warmer recipe: Slow-cooked Pearl Barley and Ox Cheek Stew

Published Friday, Nov 21 2014, 19:20 GMT  |  By  |  Add comment
We're shunning the usual chicken and lamb stews for this really tasty ox beef number – perfect for a cold winter's night.

This dish is ideal if you fancy trying something a little bit different, it slow cooks ox cheek and bacon for a tender, delicious taste. While the likes of garlic, rosemary and even a dash of ale are piled in to create a stunning sauce.

Ox cheek stew

© Badger Ale

Using cheek meat is becoming increasingly popular and now pork and beef cheeks are even being stocked in supermarkets. They're cheaper cuts but need slow cooking to tenderise. The results are delicious.


  • 4 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1kg ox cheek, trimmed and cut into 3 - 4cm chunks
  • 200g smoked bacon lardons
  • 2 banana shallots, sliced
  • 2 sticks of celery, finely chopped
  • 2 carrots, finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons plain flour
  • 300ml Badger Poacher’s Choice Ale
  • 300ml beef stock
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 sprigs fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • 3 fresh bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon red wine vinegar
  • 100g pearl barley


1 Preheat the oven to 160C, fan 140C, gas 3.

2 Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a large casserole pot and brown the meat all over in batches. Remove and set aside.

3 Add the remaining oil and brown the bacon, shallots, celery and carrots until golden and return the meat to the pot.

4 Stir in the flour, before gradually stirring in the Badger poacher’s choice ale with the stock, followed by the tomatoes, garlic, herbs and vinegar and season.

5 Bring to the boil, cover and place in the oven for 2 1/2 hours.

6 Stir in the pearl barley and cook for a further hour until the meat is tender.

7 Remove the bay leaves and serve with seasonal vegetables.

Prep Time

15 minutes

Cook Time

3 hours, 45 minutes

Nutrition Information

Serves 6

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