Morning all - as you see I have a particularly decadent wee pie here for you, just in time for the weekend. As you want with any good pie the base is crisp and holds together, while the top has a good bit of flaky action. The filling is lush - layers of melty mozzarella, earthy mushrooms, tender beef and sweet caramelized onion - all harmonizing together in every delicious mouthful! This is my latest recipe for the Dish magazine website, and ideal for enjoying with the rugby on Saturday. I would strongly suggest making the beef filling the day before - the longer all of those flavours can hang out together the better - but in emergencies, being made in the morning will suffice :) Grab the stuff on your way home from work - the beef bit only takes about 10 minutes to prep and 15-20 minutes to get cooking, then you just leave it for 4 hours - et voila - all done. If you can't be faffed making caramelized onion, bought will do just fine - and the pastry is all made for you too, so really, just a bit of work at the beginning, a bit of work in 'construction' and you're all done. Serve with a good chutney, a pile of creamy mash and a bitter green salad. Or not. Haha - up to you!
Very brief state of the nation - Pog is off for a romantic weekend in Tasmania with the lovely Will (adventures!), Rich is actually swatting for his uni law exam (I have seen video evidence) and I am spending a night at a girlfriend's batch anticipating a flurry of crosswords and code crackers, a walk or two and a fair bit of whiskey. Have a good one - go the ABs - and hope you enjoy the pies :)
150g streaky bacon, chopped into 1cm strips
500g mixed mushrooms (I used field mushrooms and Swiss browns - large mushrooms sliced, and small mushrooms quartered)
850g stewing steak such as blade, cut into 3cm pieces
1 cup red wine
1 cup beef stock
a sprig of thyme
3 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoons whole milk
525g shortcrust pastry (3 1/2 Edmonds ready rolled pastry sheets)
1 1/2 cups grated mozzarella
600g flaky pastry (4 sheets Edmonds ready rolled pastry sheets)
1 egg, lightly whisked
12 tablespoons sesame seeds (optional)
3 tablespoons olive oil
3 large red onions, finely sliced
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large heavy based saucepan and cook bacon for 4-5 minutes until the fat has started to render and the bacon is a little crispy. Remove the bacon with a slotted spoon and add the mushrooms. Cook over a medium high heat for 8-10 minutes then tip mushrooms out into a container. Heat remaining tablespoon of olive oil in the same pot and cook beef over a medium high heat for 3-4 minutes until browned. Add mushrooms and bacon back to the pot with wine, stock and thyme. Cover, season with salt and pepper and simmer over a low heat for 4 hours until the beef is super tender. Chill over night.
Remove thyme and reheat beef gently, sprinkle with flour, stir in milk and cook, stirring until smooth and slightly thickened. Set aside. Heat oil in a large frying pan and add onions, cook for 10 minutes then add sugar and cook a further 30-35 minutes. Add balsamic vinegar and season if desired with sea salt and black pepper. Cool. Lightly spray 8x 1 cup capacity pie tins with a little baking spray. Cut shortcrust pastry rounds and strips to line the tins, squishing any joins together. Divide half of the mozzarella between the pastry cases. Divide beef filling between the cases then top with remaining mozzarella and caramelized onion. Cut 8 pastry lids from the flaky pastry and top pies. Seal edges by pressing with the tines of a fork or your thumbs, and trim. Brush with egg and sprinkle with sesame seeds, if using. Chill the pies while the oven heats to 180˚C then bake for 1 hour - cover the tops with foil for the last 15 minutes if necessary. Leave pies to sit for a few minutes before tipping out of the tins and serving with tomato chutney, a bitter green salad and a pile of creamy mashed potatoes.
Pies can be made a day in advance and cooked just before serving.