Steak and Kidney Pie

A traditional English dish, Steak and Kidney Pie makes an ideal main course for dinner on a cold winter’s evening. Serve it steaming hot with plenty of mashed potatoes and green beans.

2 lb. chuck steak, trimmed of excess fat and cut into

1-inch cubes

8 oz. ox kidney, cleaned, prepared and cut into small pieces

2 tablespoons flour

½ teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

2 teaspoons dried mixed herbs

2 oz. butter

1 medium-sized onion, thinly sliced

10 fl. oz. beef stock

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

6 oz. flour

½ teaspoon salt

5 oz. butter, cut into walnut-sized pieces

3 TO 4 tablespoons iced water

1 egg, lightly beaten

First make the pastry. Sift the flour and salt into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add the butter. Pour in the iced water and mix quickly into a firm dough, which should be lumpy.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into an oblong. Fold it in three and turn it so that the open edge faces you. Roll out again into an oblong and fold and turn as before. Repeat this once again to make three turns in all. Put the dough in the refrigerator to chill.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the steak, kidney, flour, salt, pepper and mixed herbs and stir well until the meat is coated with the flour mixture.

In a large frying-pan, melt half the butter over moderate heat. When the foam subsides, add the onion and fry, stirring occasionally, for 5 to 7 minutes or until it is soft and translucent but not brown.

Add the remaining butter to the pan. Add the meat mixture to the pan and cook, stirring frequently, for 10 to 12 minutes or until it is lightly browned on all sides. Add the stock, Worcestershire sauce, salt and pepper to the pan. Bring the liquid to the boil, stirring frequently. Cover the pan and reduce the heat to low. Simmer the meat, stirring occasionally, for 1 to 2 hours or until it is tender when pierced with the point of a sharp knife. Remove the pan from the heat.

Transfer the meat and the liquid to a pie dish and set aside to cool completely.

Preheat the oven to very hot 450 °F (Gas Mark 8, 230°C).

Remove the dough from the refrig-erator. If it looks streaky, roll it out into an oblong and fold it into three again. On a floured surface, roll out the dough to 1-inch larger than the top of the pic dish. With a knife, trim the edges and cut out a

½ inch strip around the dough.

Dampen the rim of the pie dish with water and press the dough strip on to the rim. With a pastry brush dipped in water, lightly moisten the dough strip.

Using the rolling pin, lift the dough on to the dish. With a knife, trim the dough and, with your fingers, crimp the edges to seal them to the strip already on the dish. With a sharp knife, make a small hole in the centre of the dough. With a pastry brush, coat the dough with a little of the beaten egg. Roll out the dough trimmings and use them to make a decoration for the top of the pie. Brush the decoration with a little of the beaten egg.

Place the pie in the oven and bake for 10 minutes. Brush the dough with the remaining beaten egg. Reduce the heat to moderate 350°F (Gas Mark 4,180°C) and bake for a further 20 minutes or until the pastry is deep golden brown.

Remove the pic from the oven and serve immediately.

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