In a large, lidded casserole dish, heat the oil and fry the onion, carrots and butternut squash for 10 minutes, until softened slightly and beginning to turn golden.
Add the garlic for the last minute. Stir in the pearl barley, chopped tomatoes, Worcestershire sauce and stock, then bring to the boil. Simmer for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, place the dumpling mix in a bowl with the thyme, half the parsley and 75ml water, then make up according to the pack directions. Shape the dough into 8 balls.
When the hotpot has cooked for 25 minutes, stir in the beef and most of the remaining parsley. Then sit the dumplings on top, cover and allow the beef to cook and the dumplings to steam for 10 minutes (removing from the heat for the final 3 minutes). Garnish with the remaining parsley and serve.
Cook's tip: The dumplings will continue to steam in the covered pot when you have removed it from the heat.
Make it veggie: Omit the beef and stir through some beetroot at step 4 and crumble over a little goats' cheese when serving.