A traditional British pie at its best – meltingly tender after long slow cooking.

This recipe is from The Times Cookery Book by Katie Stewart (1972), page 138.

Serves 4-6  /  Time taken 3-3½ hours


700g stewing steak (aguja de ternera)
225g ox kidney (riñones de ternera)
Seasoned flour (harina con sal y pimienta)
15g dripping or vegetable fat (grasa o margarina)
2 onions (cebollas)
Pinch Thyme (pizca tomillo)
Salt & pepper (sal & pimienta)
600 ml stock – I used Bovril (caldo de carne o Bovril)
225g flaky pastry (hojaldre)
Egg and milk (huevo y leche)

Wipe the steak, trim away the fat and cut steak into neat cubes.  Snip away any core from the kidney and cut into pieces.  Roll the meat in seasoned flour, then fry quickly in the hot fat until browned on all sides.  Lift the meat into a saucepan.  Peel and slice the onion and add to the pan along with the mixed herbs, a seasoning of salt and pepper, and the stock.  Bring up to the boil, cover with a lid and simmer gently for 1 1/2 hours to partly cook the meat.  When cooking time is complete, strain off all but about 150 ml of the gravy and set aside while preparing the pie top (see Quick Flaky Pastry Recipe).

On a lightly floured surface, roll the pastry out about 2.5cms larger all round tan a 1 litre pie dish.  Using the pie dish as a guide, cut out a cover for the pie from the centre of the pastry.  Using the pastry trimming, cover the greased rim of the dish.  Spoon the meat and gravy from the saucepan into the pie dish.  Damp the pastry rim with cold wáter and then cover the whole pie with the pastry top.  Press edges together to seal and trim away any excess pastry.  With a knife, flute the edges together to seal.  Make a hole in the centre of the pie and decorate with leaves of pastry cut from any remaining pieces.  Brush the pie surface with egg and milk before sticking the decoration in place.  Place the pie in the centre of a hot oven (220ºC) and bake for 30 minutes.  Lower the heat to moderate (180ºC) and bake for a further 40 minutes to 1 hour.

Serve hot with any reserved gravy or stock from the initial cooking.






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