I decided to make a steak and ale pie with mashed taters for dinner followed by panna cotta for dessert for Friday nights dinner.
I used Rachel Allen’s flaky pastry recipe as it always turns put perfectly and is nice and buttery, yet golden and crispy on the top. It takes a good 2 and half hours to make because you need to let it rest in the fridge for 30 mins after adding each portion of butter. It’s definitely worth the wait though so give it a try!
Flaky Pastry Recipe
Source: Rachel Allen Bake
500g / 1 lb 2oz Plain Flour
Pinch of Salt
325g / 11 ½ oz Cold Butter
175 ml (6 fl oz) Cold Water
1. Sift the flour and salt into a bowl.
2. Divide the butter into 4 equal parts.
3. Rub one of the portions of butter into the flour mix. Put the other 3 portions back into the fridge to keep cold.
4. Add in the water and mix to a dough.
5. Cover in cling film and put it in the fridge for 30 mins.
6. After the 30 minutes, roll out the dough into a rectangle.
7. Cut up the 2nd portion of butter into tiny cubes and dot on the lower two thirds of the dough. (see my pics below)
8. Fold the top over and the bottom over the top. Roll back into a rectangle and turn it at a 90 degree angle and repeat the folds (but without the butter). Wrap in cling film and put it in the fridge to rest for 30 mins.
9. Repeat step 7 and 8 for the last 2 lots of butter.
10. When all the butter has been rolled into the dough, put it back in the fridge for another 30 mins to relax again or until ready to use.
I used the following recipe for the filling...
Mrs Hackneys Beef & Ale Pie Recipe:
2 x Packs of stewing Beef or Braising Beef
Flour with salt and pepper added
Butter to brown the beef
1 x Bottle of Ale (500ml)
Onions x 2
Carrots – approx 6 - 8
Mushrooms – a pack, chopped into thirds
Fresh Thyme – 3 or 4 strands
Bay Leaf x 1
2 -3 cloves of garlic, roughly chopped
500ml beef stock (2 x stock cubes)
Red currant jelly x 2 tsp
Good splash of balsamic
Salt & Pepper
1. Pre-heat the oven to 220 C / 425 F
2. Dust the beef in the seasoned flour.
3. Brown the beef in a good knob of butter and a splash of oil. Do this in batches. If you overcrowd the pan, the beef won’t brown properly. Remove when browned and put in a bowl. You may need to keep adding more oil and butter as you do each batch.
4. Once all the beef is done, add the onions and carrots to the pan.
5. Add in the garlic and herbs. Cook for 5 – 10 mins on a medium high heat until the onions have softened.
6. Add in the bottle of ale, the stock and a good splash of Worcestershire sauce.
7. Cover with a lid and simmer on low for approx 1 hour.
8. After it’s simmered for around an hour, add in 2 tsp of the redcurrant jelly and a good splash of balsamic vinegar to taste. This sweetens it slightly.
9. Cook for a further hour and then spoon into a pie dish.
10. Top with the pastry. Make sure you brush the edge of the pie dish with a bit of beaten egg so that the pastry sticks to the side.
11. Brush the top with the beaten egg. Bake for approx 30 – 40 minutes until golden and bubbling.
For the mash...
For the potatoes, boil them until tender. Drain when ready and then put them back in the pan. Mash them and add a good splash of double cream, a huge knob of butter, lots of white pepper, salt and around 2 – 3 tbs of grated Parmesan cheese. Spoon into an oven proof dish, sprinkle some extra Parmesan on top and put in the oven until a bit crispy and golden.
Mrs Hackneys Notes:
(I use one pack of each meat, which comes to 900 grams but you can put in 800g – 1,000g if you want)
1. For the panna cotta, soak the gelatine leaves in a little cold water until soft.
Also, I checked my salad leaves on Thursday night and was so excited because they've started to sprout in just 4 days!!
My little gardening tools have also arrived! They were only £3.00 off Ebay including postage, which I thought was a real bargain!!
I think you should all bake something next week and send me a picture. I'll pick my favourite and will send a little prize!
Sue and I went for a little jog this morning. We found an amazing shop up the road that sells everything for the kitchen. It’s amazing! I got a metal fish slice and lime green salt pig. It’s so cute! I also found Emma Bridgewaters shop on Fulham Road and got a new spoon rest, a veggie peeler and tea strainer.
We also found a place called Pottery Cafe where you can paint a piece of pottery! It’s quite expensive though but Sure and I are going to go one day and paint something. I want to paint a teapot.
We are very excited that Whitney Houston is on the X Factor! I made more homemade pizzas for Saturday night. I did the usual chorizo and chilli but also caramelised some onions so did one half spicy and the other half with the onions and some mushrooms on. Both flavours were delicious.
It’s now Sunday today so Sue and went for another mini run. We managed about 1 and a half laps which is better than no laps at all. I also made a delicious roast dinner – pork with crackling, cabbage & bacon, roasted potatoes, carrots, cauliflower cheese for me and sue, yorkshires and cider and apple gravy.
I forgot to take a photo sorry!