What's It All About—
This blog began as a side project when we opened Nook Eatery in 2009. In September 2012 we sold Nook, and sadly it now no longer exists. We have a new blog (see A Good Place to Gather). As always we remain inspired by the ingredients we use and the food we cook. This site remains purely as an archive of our three years at Nook Eatery and the recipes I created.
Ever since Miss Moss posted this on her blog I have wanted to cook up something dark and wonderful. And so I present to you my humble (but not so much) beef pie.
Someone had thoughtfully stocked our fridge with some Brewers&Union Dark Ale, and what could be more dark and comforting than a Steak and Ale Pie. This would make the ideal Father’s Day lunch, served with thick cut English Pub style chips. In our case we opted for some organic honey roasted parsnips.
- 900g stewing beef steaks, diced (I used chuck steak)
- 3 tbsp butter
- 40ml olive oil
- 4 slices smoked bacon, chopped
- 2 white onions sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 carrots, chopped
- 2 sprigs thyme
- 1 bay leaf
- 500ml beef stock (I made some in the week using oxtail bones)
- 150g mixed mushrooms, cultivated and wild
- 400ml Brewers&Union Dark Ale, or other quality beer
- 25g potato flour
- salt and pepper to taste
- 300g ready-rolled puff pastry
- 1 egg, beaten
1. Heat the oil and butter in a saucepan until hot. Add the beef in batches to brown, remove and set aside. Add the onion, garlic and thyme to the saucepan and cook for 5 minutes, or until the onions have softened. Add the carrot and cook for a further 5 minutes.
2. Add the beef back to the pan and pour in the stock and beer. If need be add enough water so that the meat is just covered by liquid. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 2 hours, skimming and stirring every 20 minutes or so, until the meat is just tender but still has texture. Remove the beef pieces to a plate and set aside.
3. Strain the cooking liquid and return to the warm pan over a high heat. Continue cooking the liquid until reduced by about one-third. Mix together the potato flour and 2 teaspoons water and add to the cooking liquid, stirring well to combine. Return the beef to the liquid. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Fry the mushrooms in a hot pan until browned and add to the beef. Pour the mixture into a container with a large surface area to cool down.
4. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees celcius. Roll out the pastry and cut out a lid to cover the pie dish. Spoon the mixture into the pie dish and lay over the pastry lid. Brush with egg wash and make a small hold in the middle to allow steam to escape. Reduce the oven temperature to 180 degrees celcius and bake the pie for 30 – 35 minutes, or until golden brown on top. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a few minutes before serving.