Make this. Soon.
I usually use a puff pastry or pie crust to top savory pies, but this pastry – wow. It’s a little more “biscuit” and little less “puff” than my all-butter pie crust. It’s mouth watering and scrumptious and I really think you ought to make this right now.
This recipe is from NY Times Cooking (which I love). I made a roughly 2/3 version of this recipe (based on 2 pounds of stew meat) and it fit perfectly in my 9″ deep pie dish. I would have had leftover filling had I made the entire recipe (although that would not have been a hardship). I made the whole recipe for the pastry and rolled it thick. I hope you love it, too.
FOR THE STEW (again, I made 2/3 of this…)
- 4 tablespoons butter
- 2 large red onions, chopped
- 4 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 2 ribs celery, chopped
- 10 mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
- 3 pounds stew meat, chopped into bite-size pieces
- Kosher salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 1 sprig rosemary
- About 4 cups (2 cans) Guinness or other stout
- 8 ounces freshly grated Cheddar
FOR THE PASTRY
- 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 2 ¼ teaspoons baking powder
- ¾ teaspoon salt
- ½ cup (1 stick) very cold unsalted butter, diced
- 1 egg yolk, lightly beaten, to brush on before baking
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- In a large, ovenproof pan fitted with a lid, heat 2 tablespoons of the butter over medium-low heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until soft, about 10 minutes.
- Add the carrots, celery, mushrooms and remaining 2 tablespoons butter and cook over medium heat, stirring frequently, until the mushrooms are dark in color and the moisture released by them has evaporated, about 15 minutes.
- Season the beef pieces all over with salt and pepper. Add the beef, flour and rosemary to the pan and cook over high heat, stirring often, for about 5 minutes.
- Add enough Guinness to just cover the beef. Cover the pan and put it in the oven for 1 1/2 hours (1 hour for the 2/3 recipe). Remove from the oven and stir. Return to the oven and cook for 1 hour more (30 minutes for the 2/3 recipe). If it remains thin, set the pan over medium-low heat, remove the lid and reduce the liquid. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Fold in about half of the Cheddar.
- While the stew is cooking, prepare the pastry: sift together the flour, baking powder and salt into a bowl. Using a pastry cutter or your hands, quickly work the butter into the dough until it is the texture of coarse meal. Add ice water, a splash at a time, until a firm dough forms. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.
- Place the dough between two sheets of plastic wrap and, using a rolling pin, roll to the thickness of a computer mouse pad. Pour the stew into an 8-inch-square, 2-inch-high Pyrex dish or a deep 9-inch pie pan. Scatter the remaining Cheddar across the top. Place the dough on top of the pie and pinch it closed around the edges using the tines of a fork, then slash the center lightly with a knife. Brush with the egg yolk, place on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes, or until the pastry is puffy and golden.