Beef and Ale Pot Pies
- 450g/1lb stewing or braising steak, cut into 2.5cm/1inch cubes
- 30ml/2tbsp rapeseed or olive oil
- 30ml/2tbsp plain flour
- Salt and freshly milled black pepper
- 2 medium onions, peeled and chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 3 large carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
- 75g/3oz fresh or frozen peas
- 600ml/1pint pale ale or good, hot beef stock
- 10ml/2tsp tomato purée
- 15ml/1tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 2 large sprigs fresh thyme
- 2 bay leaves
- ½ x 500g pack shortcrust pastry
- 1 egg, beaten
Heat the oil in a large frying pan on a moderate heat. In a large plastic bag add the flour and seasoning. Add the beef and toss in the seasoned flour.
Cook the beef in batches for 3-4 minutes until brown, turning occasionally. Transfer to a large casserole dish.
In the same frying pan cook the onions, garlic and carrots for 3-4 minutes and transfer to the casserole dish.
Add the peas, ale or stock, tomato purée, Worcestershire sauce, thyme and bay leaves. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat, cover and cook on the hob for 1½ hours, stirring occasionally. Cool slightly and remove the bay leaves.
Preheat the oven to Gas mark 6, 200°C, 400°F.
Spoon the beef equally into four 300ml/½ pint round or oval ovenproof dishes. Brush the edges of each dish with water.
Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface and cut four equal rounds of pastry to fit the pie dishes and seal around the edges. Make a small hole in the centre of each pie to allow the steam to escape.
Place on a large baking sheet and bake for 20 until pastry is golden brown.
Serve with seasonal vegetables, crusty bread or mashed potatoes and any hot gravy from the pan.