Recipe courtesy of Levi Roots

Beef Pepperpot Stew with Spillers' Dumplings

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  • Level: Intermediate
  • Total: 1 hr 35 min
  • Prep: 35 min
  • Cook: 1 hr
  • Yield: 8 servings
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21 ounces well-trimmed stewing beef, preferably from the shin (may substitute stewing chicken)

4 1/2 cups beef stock or water mixed with 2 teaspoons yeast extract

4 sprigs fresh thyme

1 (4-inch) piece fresh ginger, very thinly sliced

1 onion, coarsely chopped

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 bay leaf

6 allspice berries

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

16 ounces yams or potatoes

14 ounces sweet potatoes

16 ounces fresh pumpkin or butternut squash

4 large green onions

2 to 4 hot red chiles, preferably Scotch Bonnet

1 (16-ounce) can coconut milk

1 (16-ounce) can lima beans, drained and rinsed

3/4 cup spinach or callaloo (amaranth), washed, stemmed, destalked, and shredded

Spillers' Dumplings:

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

Pinch kosher salt

4 to 5 tablespoons water


  1. For the pepperpot: Wash the stewing beef and pat it dry with paper towels. Cut the meat into cubes around 5/8-inch thick and transfer to a large ovenproof casserole or heavy-bottomed saucepan. Combine the beef with the liquid, thyme, ginger, onion, garlic, bay leaf, and allspice berries, then adjust the seasonings with salt, and pepper. Bring the ingredients to a boil, skim the froth from the top of the liquid, cover with a lid, reduce the heat, and simmer for 30 minutes.
  2. Peel the yams, sweet potatoes, and pumpkin. Cut the yam into pieces the size of large potato wedges. Cut the sweet potato and pumpkin into 1 1/2-inch chunks. Discard the pumpkin seeds. Bash the green onions with a heavy knife to release their flavor. Dice the chiles (wear gloves), and add with the vegetables to the pot along with the coconut milk and lima beans. Stir the ingredients, and simmer gently, covered, for another 25 to 35 minutes, or until the meat and vegetables are tender, and cooked through. Add the greens around 13 minutes before the cooking time is up.
  3. For the dumplings: Mix the flour and salt together in a mixing bowl, and then gradually stir in the water to form a dough. Pull off 24 small pieces from the dough 1 piece at a time, and roll them into rounds or long pointy-ended ovals. Cook's Note: If you want bigger dumplings, use a double-sized piece of dough, and roll it into a round, pressing a small indentation into the top of it with your thumb.
  4. Drop the dumplings into the hot pot immediately after rolling, around 8 minutes before the cooking time is up. Taste the dumpling, and add extra salt, and pepper, if necessary.

Cook’s Note

If you are using chicken for the pepperpot, simmer for 15 to 25 minutes. The larger dumplings will need around 12 minutes to cook. We call them Spillers' Dumplings perhaps because they spill over the top of the full dish of pepperpot, so make sure that the pot is covered.

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