I usually fry steak but fancy trying it braised. Does chef have a recipe to suit four people? Jan Rose, Penrith

  • Braised steak is one of my favourite dishes, but I like to use a cut called feather blade! It is taken from the shoulder and has a really good marbling of fat. You will need about 300g of raw beef per person. In a large deep pan over a medium heat, pour 25ml of olive oil, add your beef blade and seal all over until golden brown. Remove from pan and add one roughly chopped carrot, one peeled and chopped onion, one stick of chopped celery and two cloves chopped garlic. Cook for 5 minutes until well coloured. Place the beef back into the pan, add 100ml red wine, one sprig thyme, one sprig rosemary, piece of orange peel and chicken or vegetable stock to cover the beef. Place a lid on the pan and cook in a preheated oven at 140C for 3-4 hours. Test a thick part of the beef and it should feel very soft. Remove it from the stock, then pour the cooking liquor into another pan and reduce by three quarters. Pass the sauce through a sieve and into another pan, whisk in a couple of knobs of butter and some fresh thyme.
  • Justin Woods, head chef at The Castle Green Hotel, Kendal, and Greenhouse restaurant – follow him on Twitter on @chefgreenhouse