Friday, March 16, 2012

Paddy's Day Pie

(c) Harry Weir

I made and styled these pie's for Superquinn's cookbook A Passion for Food. Beef and stout are a classic Irish combination so they would make the perfect lunch or dinner for St. Patrick's Day! Enjoy!

Beef, Mushroom and Stout Pie

Serves 6

4 tbsp sunflower oil
1kg (2 1/4 lb) round steak, well trimmed
2 onions, finely chopped
4 carrots, finely sliced
4 celery sticks, finely chopped
600ml (1 pint) stout
1 litre (1 3/4 pints) beef or chicken stock
250g (9oz) flat breakfast mushrooms, stems removed and chopped
600g (1lb 6oz) self raising flour, plus extra for dusting
300g ( 11oz) shredded vegetable suet
Sea salt and ground pepper

Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a large pan with a lid and sauté half of the beef until it is well coloured. Transfer to a plate and repeat until all the beef is cooked.

Add the rest of the oil to the pan and sauté the onions, carrots and celery for 10 minutes without colouring.

Pour in the stout and simmer gently until reduced by half, scraping the bottom of the pan to remove any sediment. Return the beef to the pan with the stout, stock and mushrooms. Season and cover and simmer over a gentle heat for 1-1.5 hours until the beef is just tender but still holding its shape.

Strain through a colander set over a bowl, reserving the liquid and leave to cool.

Preheat the oven to 220 C ( Gas mark 7/ 425 F).

To make the pastry crust, sieve the flour into a bowl, stir in the suet and add just enough cold water to make a firm dough - 400 ml (14 fl oz) is about right.
Rest for 5 minutes, then cut into six pieces and roll out each one on a lightly floured board to a circle that is about 1cm (1/2 in) thick.

Divide the meat among individual pie dishes that hold about 450 ml (3/4 pint) and pour over enough of the gravy to come almost to the top. Do not overfill. Cut any superfluous strip off each pastry circle, dampen the rim of each dish and press the pastry strip firmly into place around the rim. Dampen the pastry strip in turn and lay the pastry lids on top. Press down to fit the lid and then press all around with a fork and then transfer to baking sheets.

Bake for 30-40 minutes until the pastry is puffed up and golden brown.

Serve set on plates and straight to the table.

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