Pot Roast Shin Beef in Ale and Honey

This recipe dates back to the late 14th century (approximately 1591), where it was the centrepiece of celebrations for the harvest and other festivals. Ale was the main liquid of the day, accompanying breakfast, lunch and dinner. It was, therefore, used a great deal in dishes, with most farms and homes brewing their own ale on a daily basis. The ale of that period did not contain hops, which prevents the souring process, so soured ale (or ale-aigre as it was known in French and within the English Royal courts) was used in the same way as we use vinegar today for seasoning and preserving. This recipe contains both ale and Ale-gar©®, which give this dish a truly delightful flavour.


Serves: 2
Cooking time: 2 hours
Marinade time;: 8-12 hours


  • 200g shin beef, trimmed, but left in one piece on the bone
  • 1 tbsp. Macadamia nut oil
  • 300ml light ale
  • 1 tbsp. tomato purée
  • 100g clear honey

For the marinade:

  • 4 onions, peeled and cut into 6 wedges
  • 100ml stout
  • 50ml Ale-Gar©®
  • 3 thyme sprigs
  • 3 fresh rosemary sprigs
  • 3 sprigs of oregano
  • 3 parsley sprigs
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 6 garlic clove, peeled and halved
  • 1tsp ground mace
  • ½ tsp. turmeric
  • 1tsp sea salt
  • 1tsp Ale-Gar©® mustard
  • 1tsp black peppercorns, crushed


  1. First, prepare the marinade. In a large bowl, place the onions, stout, Ale-Gar©®, thyme, rosemary, oregano, parsley, bay leaves, garlic, mace, cloves, turmeric, sea salt, Ale-Gar©® mustard and peppercorns. Mix well.
  2. Add the shin of beef to the marinade, making sure that it is completely covered by the marinade.
  3. Marinate in the refrigerator for 8 to 12 hours, turning occasionally.
  4. Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas 4.
  5. Remove the beef from the bowl, reserving the marinade for later.
  6. Heat the macadamia nut oil in a large, heavy-based roasting tray on the hob until very hot. Add in the beef and cook until golden on all sides.
  7. Pour the reserved marinade into the hot pan, add the tomato puree and the light ale, and cover with kitchen foil.
  8. Place in the oven for 1 hour and 40 minutes, basting occasionally.
  9. 10 minutes before the end of cooking, uncover the beef, drizzle over the honey and return to oven to continue cooking uncovered.
  10. Remove from the oven and allow to rest before carving.