Beef, Ale and Mushroom Pie
Recipe by Sam Linsell
1kg beef chuck cut into bite-size cube
Olive oil to fry
1 onion finely chopped
1 medium carrot finely chopped
1 celery stalk finely chopped
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 can / 330ml pale ale or amber ale beer
60ml / ¼ cup flour
2 cups of good quality beef stock
2 medium carrots peeled and diced
3 bay leaves
4 – 5 thyme stalks
500 gms brown button mushrooms such as Portobello cut into quarters
Olive oil to fry
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 mushroom stock cube or sachet dissolved in 200ml boiling water
Salt and pepper
1 – 2 tsp of finely chopped parsley (optional)
1 – 2 sheets of puff pastry cut to the size of your pie dish
Take the meat out of the fridge and bring it to room temperature for about an hour and ensure that the meat is patted dry with a paper towel. Cut all the vegetables and set them aside.
Heat a good splash of olive oil into the base of a heavy-lidded casserole pot. Cook the meat in batches over high heat until browned on all sides. Set aside.
Add another splash of olive oil if necessary and fry the finely chopped onion, carrot, and celery for about 5 minutes over medium to low heat until softened. Stir regularly to ensure the bits don’t burn on the bottom of the pan adding a splash of water if necessary or put on the lid to generate steam. Add the garlic and fry for a minute.
Add half the beer to deglaze the pan and allow most of the liquid to cook off. Add the flour and stir until it has thickened. Add the rest of the beer and allow it to be absorbed. Add back the browned meat, the beef stock, the diced carrots and the bay and thyme. Season well with salt and pepper.
Bring to a simmer and then cook the dish covered over a low heat for an hour.
After an hour, remove the lid and carry on cooking the meat for another 30 minutes or so, stirring occasionally allowing the sauce to thicken.
Heat a nonstick frying pan and add a splash of olive oil. Pan-fry the quartered mushrooms until golden on the outside but still firm. Do this in two batches. The return them all to than and add the Worcestershire sauce, and 200ml of mushroom stock and allow that to cook until most of the liquid has cooked off. Stir the mushrooms through the casserole and then carry on cooking the dish uncovered for a further 30 minutes. By this time the meat should be very tender. Add the chopped parsley.
If you are making this in advance you can allow this to cool until you need to use it (lid on) or go ahead and fill your pie dish with the filling. Take your frozen puff pastry out of the freezer about 15 minutes before you need to and allow it to thaw at room temperature. It is easier to cut pastry that is still partially frozen. If necessary, roll out the pastry a bit to fit your dish. Drape the pastry over your pie, crimp the edges and cut out decorative shapes with any remaining scraps.
Ensure that your oven is preheated to 180C / 350F and once at temperature, bake your pie for 25-35 minutes until golden brown.
Serve with generous glasses of the 2018 Pierneef Syrah Viognier.