Pie....

.... well, after much wringing of hands & mopping of brows, my darling Internet has once again been jolted back to life by the loving hands of a visiting technician...... and we be upgraded, rubberneckers.......

... anyhoo, everything is back up and humming right along like a Singer sewing machine.... however, even though the technology is up to snuff, I remain unavailingly inspired to tell even the tiniest of stories here........

..... but, I CAN say that I am incredibly proud to have finally (after 10 delicious attempts) created the perfect crust of puff pastry for my infamous Steak Pie!.... and yes, photographic proof shall be offered up after the recipe... it's actually quite easy!.....

... first off, you will need the following mundane ingredients in or around your kitchen before attempting my Steak Pie....

Worcestershire sauce
Onions
Garlic
1lb of chopped steak or Sirloin tips
Red wine (I used a cheap Merlot)
Olive oil
Black pepper
Beef stock
Flour
Eggs
Frozen puff pastry sheets
Water
Bowls
an Oven
various Whisks and Spoons, and a couple of bowls
and five hours of your time

.... in a large pot over medium heat combine the olive oil, 3 cloves of chopped garlic, 1 diced white onion, three tablespoons of Worcestershire sauce, and the 1lb of beef..... cook until the meat is browned well on all sides - stirring it frequently.....

... once the meat is browned, add 1 cup of red wine and one cup of beef stock..... bring this to the boil and then turn down to a simmer for roughly four hours - stirring as you remember that you are actually cooking whilst going about your normal day (of reading, writing, watering flowers, doing laundry, watching television, downloading porn, etc.).....

.... the pot should be covered, by the way, as you don't want any of the mixture to boil away just yet.....

.... once the chunks of beef are tender enough to crumble when mashed against the side of the pot with your wooden spoon, you are ready to proceed to phase two of the operation......

.... sprinkle in two tablespoons of four and stir until all lumps are gone and the broth surrounding the meat has thickened to a nice "gravy" consistency...... and then remove from heat and decant into a casserole dish to cool..... (mine is a 1930s era Hull deep-dish that my mother bought me recently whilst out rummaging through an antique fair, but really, any old smallish casserole dish will do)...... the main thing is to make sure that there is enough room between your "filling" and your "crust" to allow that they'll not touch while cooking....

... after the meat mixture has cooled in the the dish, drape the dish with your pre-defrosted frozen sheet of puff pastry, ensuring that the pastry is drawn taught enough over the dish that it does not sag more than 1/2 an inch in the middle..... fold the edges of the pastry over, and then crimp the dough all the way around the side of the dish to ensure that it holds fast during baking.....

.... crack and egg into a small bowl, add a tablespoon of water, and then whisk it as harshly as you can while still enjoying the process....... once properly abused, coat the dough mixture entirely with your freshly beaten egg/water mixture......

..... now, here is where conventional thought has always gotten me in to trouble...... see, normally I would then punch a hole in the center of the dough to allow for steam to escape during baking.... DO NOT DO THIS...... just trust me on that....... if you DO punch a hole, your dough will sag further and end up a lot more mushy than it should.... so, do NOT punch a hole in the pastry..... keep it taught, keep it crimped, and make sure that you glazed the whole pastry as I mentioned earlier......

....now, you are ready to go, boys and girls...... bake that baby at about 400 degrees for twenty minutes or so (keeping watch as not to overcook the pastry) and you are on the home stretch........

... if you followed the directions properly, it should come out looking a little bit like this....... with 1 1/2 inches of beautiful puff pastry sitting atop 2 inches of hot, tender Steak Pie & rich gravy...... check this out....

steak_pie_small1.jpg

.... here's a different angle.....

steak_pie_small2.jpg

... I served mine up with a nice side-order of thick-cut fries and a dollop of cole slaw...... the pastry and the fries are perfect for mopping up all that beefy gravy........

... and with that, I'm off to think of something to actually write tomorrow....

by Eric on June 15, 2010 | Bullshit (7) | TrackBack (0) | Ummm, Ok....
Bullshit So Far

Damn - I just finished dinner and now this makes me hungry again... It looks wonderful!

So glad they got you back online. WooHoo!

Bullshitted by Teresa on June 15, 2010 07:48 PM

You learn to make nan yet, hammerhead?

Bullshitted by zonker on June 15, 2010 07:58 PM

... thank you, Teresa... you're a darling.......

.... and no, Zonker.... but I HAVE found a source for frozen Naan!..

Bullshitted by Eric on June 15, 2010 08:27 PM

That looks scrumptious! And I have a chuck roast just waiting for inspiration. Hmmm. . .

Tonight I had a small serving of crispy-fried pork belly with peach chutney relish, the best damn collards I've ever had, and creamy grits, all washed down with Fat Tire beer. Don't be hatin' but that pork belly was gobsmackingly delish.

Bullshitted by Joan of Argghh! on June 15, 2010 09:01 PM

What a gorgeous crust on that dish of yumminess!

I just finished reading 'Fried Green Tomatoes at the Whistle Stop Cafe' (loved it) and at the end of the book are several recipes for some of the food they served there. Not that you need any help, mind you ;-) But, they look awfully good.
And it was also mentioned that she later published an entire cookbook with recipes from the cafe in her hometown that inspired the Whistle Stop in her book.

Bullshitted by Jean on June 16, 2010 08:20 PM

I'd eat that pie in a Noo Yawk minute. You know I would.

Bullshitted by Elisson on June 16, 2010 08:43 PM

I made this last night and everyone loved it! I did not make my gravy thick enough, so I need to work on that. Also my crust touched my stew so it did get soggy. I need a different pot to cook in. There is no stretching tight this dough when it's thawed! And Bones asked me to add mushrooms... I need to spend time to make it more like yours. Very very yummy.

Bullshitted by Bou on June 20, 2010 08:46 AM