This mouthwatering recipe is guaranteed to impress.
Preparation time: 45 minutes, plus refrigeration time
Baking time: 20-25 minutes
Oven temperature: 180°C
• 10ml sunflower oil
• 250g streaky bacon, chopped
• 2 onions, chopped
• 1,5 kg beef chuck or stewing steak, cut into small cubes
• 150ml prepared beef stock
• 150ml beer
• 2ml freshly ground black pepper
• 3ml dried thyme
• 5ml dried crushed chillies (optional)
• 5ml celery seeds (or use celery salt)
• 50ml cornflour
• 450g cake flour
• 450g white bread flour
• 10ml baking powder
• 150g cooking fat or lard (we used Holsum), cubed
• 150g butter, cubed
• 250ml ice-cold water
• 1 egg, lightly beaten
1 Pastry Sift the flours, baking powder and 1ml salt together. Rub in the cooking fat and butter with your fingertips. Add the ice-cold water slowly, mixing until the dough comes together. Add more water if needed. Do not over-mix. Cover and refrigerate for three to four hours.
2 Heat the oil and fry the bacon and onion until the onion is soft.
3 Add the meat and stir-fry for two minutes. Add the stock, beer, pepper, thyme, chilli (if using) and celery seeds and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 60 to 90 minutes, or until the meat is tender.
4 Mix the cornflour with a little cold water and add some of the hot stock. Stir into the meat and simmer, stirring, until thickened.
5 When ready to bake, divide three-quarters of the dough into six to eight pieces. Roll out onto a floured surface and cut out circles big enough to line individual tins (they should be big enough to hang over the sides slightly). Place the circles onto a lined baking tray and chill for 30 minutes to an hour. Roll out the remaining dough and cut into circles big enough to cover the pies. Chill these pastry circles too.
6 Grease pie tins and line with the pastry. Top with the cooled meat filling. Top with pastry circles and crimp the edges together. Make a hole in the centre for steam to escape. Brush with the beaten egg and bake in a preheated oven for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown.