Beef Onion and Guinness Pies

Have you been watching Masterchef Australia? Cause I have! I’ve been watching religiously. hehe And loving it! Friday’s Masterclass is the day I will never miss and even if I do, I will catch up on it online. It is during this time when I get inspired and motivated to try making completely new things. I love the fact that they post their recipes on the masterchef australia website too! Makes it so much easier when trying new dishes!

The Friday that we saw Gary made his beef onion & guinness pie, the mr immediately asked me to make it for dinner the next day! I was very hesistant to make pastry from scratch cos the first time I made a pie/tart base, it failed miserably! So I had a back-up plan, if the pie case failed, I would mash potatoes and turn it into a cottage pie instead! So with a back-up plan in mind, I went all out! So much so I invited friends who were in Melbourne for a visit over for dinner! Haha. I wasn’t too sure what got into my head.

Thank goodness the pie was a big hit! The pastry was buttery and flaky. We could just have it on it’s own (and we did for the left over pastry haha)! I couldn’t really believe how easy it was to make it and I had alot of fun rolling it out and cutting it to fit the baking tin as well! hehe And the best way to have the pie? With a whole heap of tomato sauce of course! YUMMY!

This is definitely a pastry I can see myself making very very often in the future for either sweet or savoury dishes!

And the beef. Where can I begin? It melts in your mouth. Pity I couldn’t cook it for slightly longer cause I already made my guests wait for 1 hour (lucky thing I had Running Man on so they were entertained! hehe) and so I just really needed to get it in the pastry cases, baked and served!

Remember my back-up plan? I had to use it anyway because I had so much beef left, it was a great way to serve them – with creamy parmesan mash! To complete the meal, I made a bowl of salad and viola! (: Was a perfect night with good company!

Beef Onion and Guinness Pies (Adapted from Masterchef Australia)

Filling

3 kg chuck steak, cut into 5cm pieces

150ml olive oil

6 onions, sliced

8 cloves of garlic, peeled and smashed

5 dried bay leaves

4 tbs plain flour

salt and freshly ground black pepper, for season

2 carrots, cut into large chunks

600ml Guinness

1.5 litres beef stock

1 egg, beaten

Tomato sauce, to serve

Maggie Beer’s Sour Cream Pastry

200g chilled unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

250g plain flour, extra for dusting

pinch of salt

1/2 cup sour cream

Steps : 

1) Season the beef generously with salt and black pepper. Heat a non-stick frying pan with 100ml of olive oil on high heat, and cook the beef in a few batches until all sides are well browned.  Add the carrot and cook for 5-6 minutes until golden. Set aside.

2) In a large pot, add the rest of the 50ml of olive oil and heat over low heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook until the onions are soft and translucent, stirring continuously. This will take around 40 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high, add the bay leaves and cook until a slightly darker brown, without burning it. Add the flour and stir till there is no visible flour left.

3) Add the beef and carrots into the pot and pour 1/2 of the Guinness into the pan to de-glaze, scraping all the brown bits on the bottom. Pour that and the remaining Guinness into the pot. Add the beef stock and make sure there is enough liquid to cover all the beef. Bring it to a boil.

4) Partially cover the pot with the lid and lower the heat to low. Allow that to simmer fir at least 2 1/2 hours or until tender. Set aside and allow it to cool until the pastry is ready. This could also be made in advance and kept in a fridge for up to 3 days.

5) To make the pastry : In an electric mixer, blend the butter and flour and a pinch of salt until the mixture resembles large bread crumbs. Slowly add the sour cream and mix until it comes together to form a dough. Shape it into a disc and wrap it in plastic wrap and chill it in the fridge for 20 minutes.

6) Preheat oven to 190 degrees celcius. Grease 12 holes in a cupcake baking tin with butter (or 6 in a muffin tin). Roll out the pastry to 3-5mm, using a little extra flour for dusting. Cut out 12 rounds about 4 cm bigger than the cupcake holes and another 12 rounds that are about 2 cm larger for the lids.

7) Place a pie base in each hole, then press in lightly with your fingers. Make sure there is about 1 cm left above the mould. Fill each hole with some beef mixture and top each with a pastry lid and crimp the edges to seal in the filling. Brush each pastry top with the beaten egg, and cut a small hole in the center of each pie for steam to escape.

8) Bake the pies for 20-25 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown. Remove from the oven and allow to stand for 5 minutes. Turn out and serve with tomato sauce.

ENJOY! (:

PS : I made much more than the 12 pies needed, so like I mentioned before, I topped the leftover beef filling with a creamy parmesan mash. You could easily make another batch of pastry and make more pies! (: Or just cut the recipe into half! 

A Pie Like No Other.

Ever seen a recipe and add it to your bookmark list almost immediately but have no courage to give it a try? This was one of them. I got about 100 more recipes bookmarked and still trying to give them a go! I’m not kidding or exaggerating.

Truth be told, I never had a very good experience with pies. Or tarts for the matter. Especially food that involve the pie/tart tin. haha. One horrible experience was the Chocolate Ganache, Cream and Strawberry Tart that I tried to bake after watching Masterchef. It was a DISASTER! Free form tarts like Hot Apple Tart I could still handle. anything to do with short crust pastry or a tin, not so much.

But I decided to suck it up, and give tarts another shot. One consolation was that I didn’t need to make shortcrust pastry. But that’s not to say that this is any simpler! Although I have to admit, I love the fact that the base is made of oats! That made me push myself even more to try this recipe!

And so I did. As you can see from the picture above, it’s not a perfect looking pie. But I think I did pretty well! And boy was it yummy! The gooey-ness of the filling was just to-die-for. REALLY. Everyone should give this a shot! Don’t think about the calories, just have it. You will love it!

One of the challenges I had was taking the pie out of the tin, without the sides and corners crumbling on me. Let me tell you this, it is not a one person job. You need extra hands for this! Thankfully I had the Mr help me! (: And he also helped me in finishing up the pie! haha and after you do finish the pie, you need to head to The Training Geek to get some exercise tips and work the sugar off! But it will all be worth it, I repeat, worth every calorie intake!

So here’s the recipe from the Momofuku cook book! Enjoy every single crumb!

What’s better than hot gooey pie and ice cream?

Oatmeal Cookie for Crust

Ingredients
2/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon flour
Scant 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
Scant 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup softened butter
1/3 cup light brown sugar
3 tablespoons sugar
1 egg
Scant 1 cup rolled oats

Directions
1. Heat the oven to 190°C.
2. In a medium bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt.
3. Cream the butter, brown sugar and sugar until light and fluffy.
4. Whisk the egg into the butter mixture until fully incorporated.
5. Stir in the flour mixture until fully combined. Stir in the oats.
6. Spread the mixture onto a 9-inch-by-13-inch baking sheet and bake until golden brown and set, about 20 minutes. Remove from heat and cool to the touch on a rack. Crumble the cooled cookie to use in the crust.

Crust

Ingredients
Crumbled cookie for crust
1/4 cup butter
1 1/2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt

Directions
Combine the crumbled cookie, butter, brown sugar and salt in a food processor and pulse until evenly combined and blended (a little of the mixture clumped between your fingers should hold together). Divide the crust between 2 (10-inch) pie tins (I used a long rectangular tin and 8 small round ones). Press the crust into each shell to form a thin, even layer along the bottom and sides of the tins. Set the prepared crusts aside while you prepare the filling.

Filling

Ingredients
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup plus a scant 3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup plus 1 teaspoon milk powder
1 cup butter, melted
3/4 cup plus a scant 2 tablespoons heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
8 egg yolks

Prepared crusts

Powdered sugar to garnish

Directions
1. Heat the oven to 180°C.
2. Whisk together the sugar, brown sugar, salt and milk powder. Whisk in the melted butter, then whisk in the heavy cream and vanilla.
3. Gently whisk in the egg yolks, being careful not to add too much air.
4. Divide the filling evenly between the 2 prepared pie shells.
5. Bake the pies, one at a time, for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 325 degrees and bake until the filling is slightly jiggly and golden brown, about 10 minutes. Remove the pies and cool on a rack.
6. Refrigerate the cooled pies until well chilled. Serve cold, and the filling will be gooey. Dust with powdered sugar before serving.

You. Will. Love. It. I. Promise. (: