The pie’s the limit

[Recipe 1] BEEF and GUINNESS STEW transforms into
Happy Fathers Day for tomorrow dads! Beef and guinness stew is the ultimate manly feast. It makes blokes positively thump the table in appreciation. We have a pot of it waiting in the fridge for dinner tomorrow night as the husband will be wanting to reclaim his manliness after spending the day at Anakie Fairy Park.
This stew is easy to make and it’s a definite plate-licker too – my 5-year old son adores it. The only time-consuming bit is waiting for it to cook, the longer the better. Reserve half of the Beef and guinness stew and you can make a hearty Chunky beef and guinness pie later, another certified man-pleaser.
 What are you up to for Father’s Day?
FOOTNOTE:  Thank you Dawn at Cake and Enemy for re-blogging this post!

Beef and guinness stew[Recipe 1] Beef and guinness stew

1.75 kilos (3.8 lb) brisket or chuck steak, coarsely chopped into 3cm (1-inch) pieces
4 tablespoons plain (all-purpose) flour
Olive oil, for frying
2 celery sticks, chopped
3 red onions, thickly sliced
4 large carrots, thinly sliced
6 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
440ml (15-oz) Guinness draught beer
2 cups beef stock
4 tablespoons tomato paste (tomato concentrate)
1 tablespoon brown sugar
4 bay leaves
2 cinnamon sticks
Salt and freshly-cracked black pepper
Creamy parmesan mashed potatoes, to serve
Chopped flat-leaf parsley to serve

Preheat oven to 180°C (350ºF).
Place beef pieces and flour in a large plastic bag. Toss to coat, and shake off excess flour.
Heat oil in a heavy-based saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook beef in batches (adding a splash more oil when required) for about 3 minutes, until well-browned. Transfer to a plate.
Add celery, onion and carrots to the pot, and 1 tablespoon more oil if required. Cook, covered, for 15 minutes or until vegetables start to soften. Stir occasionally. Add garlic and cook for a further 3 minutes, uncovered, stirring regularly. Return beef, and any juices, to the pot. Add guinness, bring to the boil, and simmer, uncovered, for 5 minutes.
Transfer vegetables, beef and juices to a large oven-proof, flame-proof pot.
Combine stock, tomato paste and brown sugar. Pour over beef and vegetables. Add bay leaves and cinnamon sticks.
Cover tightly with foil (or a lid, with foil underneath) and cook in pre-heated oven for 2–3 hours. Test to see whether beef is lovely and tender after 2 hours. If not, return to the oven for a further 30 minutes and check again. Remove and discard bay leaves and cinnamon sticks. Season well with salt and lots of pepper.
♦ Reserve half of the Beef and guinness stew, about 5 cups (1¼ kilos), for the Chunky beef and guinness pie.
Serve remaining Beef and guinness stew on a bed of creamy parmesan mashed potatoes, scattered with parsley.

  • FUSSY CHILD TIP: If your kids aren’t keen on mashed potatoes, whip them up a batch of korokke (Japanese potato croquettes) instead. Make a full batch of creamy parmesan mashed potatoes, reserving half for the adults (it can be warmed on the stove-top when required). Use the other half to make a half-serve of korokke for the kids. They will be very thankful, believe me!
  • As I discussed at the bottom of this post; I’m no expert, but according to my extensive web-surfing it’s safe to serve properly-prepared meals cooked with beer (or wine) to children over 2 years old. This dish is cooked long enough for the alcohol to evaporate, leaving only harmless trace residues.

Beef and guinness pie

[Recipe 2] Chunky beef and guinness pie

4 tablespoons plain (all-purpose) flour
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
♦ 5 cups (1¼ kilos) reserved beef and guinness stew
2 sheets store-bought puff pastry, thawed
1 egg, whisked with 1 tablespoon milk, for brushing pastry
Easy spiced tomato chutney (or store-bought chutney), to serve 

Preheat oven to 200°C (390ºF).
Grease a 24cm (9½-inch) 6-cup (1½ litres) capacity ovenproof pie dish.
Blend flour with 3 tablespoons hot water to form a smooth paste.
♦ Spoon reserved beef and guinness stew into a large saucepan.
Add flour paste and bring to boil. Simmer, uncovered, stirring constantly, for about 5 minutes, or until thickened. Stir in worcestershire sauce. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until cold.
Place the pie dish upside down, on the pastry (cut 1 piece of pastry in half and add these pieces to the edges of the first sheet, with water to seal, to make a large sheet). Use the dish as a guide to cut a circle of pastry to fit, about 1cm bigger than the dish. Cover the pastry top with a tea towel while you make the plaited edge decoration.
Cut 5mm strips of pastry from the off-cuts. Using 2 strips, twist one piece around the other for a plait or rope effect. Continue until you have a long enough ‘rope’ to encircle the pie.
Spoon the cooled beef and guinness mixture into the pie dish. Drape puff pastry circle over filling, and prick with a fork in four places. Press around the edge to seal with your fingertips. Wet the rim of the pastry top with water, and lay the knotted rope around the edge. Brush pastry with egg wash.
Bake for 20 minutes or until pastry is puffed and light golden brown. Serve with with Easy spiced tomato chutney and a green salad.

  • If you find you eat too much of the stew and don’t have 5 cups left for the pie, you can easily pad out the filling of the pie with sautéed mushrooms or small pieces of steamed potato.
  • Don’t be tempted to lay your pastry on the pie filling straight away, while you’re making the plaited edge decoration, or the pastry will become soggy. Asemble the pie when your edge decoration is complete.
  • If you have any more pastry off-cuts, you could cut out leaf shapes (or alphabet letters if you have the time and inclination). If you’re making this for Father’s Day, you could win some brownie points by cutting out ‘Dad’.

14 thoughts on “The pie’s the limit

  1. Just making the stew now! Started a bit late so had dessert first made by my daughter Harriet- lemon tart with iceream and berries and following up soon with Guinness stew- yummy can’t wait! I think we will be eating at eight thirty or nine- well it’s holidays so who gives a hoot!

      • The stew was really good. In fact I will have to make it again as we ate it all up the next day as well and I want to make the pies because I think they would be pretty awesome. This cold weather will give me another opportunity I am sure!

  2. Reblogged this on cakeandenemy and commented:
    It’s time saver Tuesday, and this is a blog that you just MUST take a look at. I found One Equals Two (1=2) via Super Food Ideas magazine, and she is absolutely spot on! Why cook twice when you can turn one basic batch into two fabulous meals. Read on and enjoy one of my favourite offerings from this blog, and consider batch cooking for yourself :)

  3. What an appetizing & wonderful stew & what a georgous pie as well! Your pictues make my mouth water! :) Seriously good food! MMMMMMM! My husband would love these 2 grand recipes a lot. I am not a beef eater but he adores it! And he loves his favourite beer too! :) xxx

  4. Yum .That pie looks delicious! We did yum-cha on Fathers Day. That fairy park looks great! I just had a look at the website. I hadn’t heard of it before!

  5. ooh! this is manly! i know my guys would love the beef and guinness stew!!! lately i’ve been running around like a headless chicken and no time to cook nice meals. saskia, do you think i can do this in a crock pot? ha! haaa!! the lazy way… via u.s.a.
    looks like i’ve missed so many of your fab posts. gonna catch up now!

    • Kim, I reckon you could definitely do this in a crockpot! Wish I owned one of those. In fact, wish I had a whole extra giant shelf in the kitchen – would also love a pasta-maker, ice-cream maker and slow cooker….

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