Beef Bourguignon Pie

Beef Bourguignon Pie

1 kg diced stewing beef, chopped into 2cm cubes
2 tblsp plain flour
2-3 tblsp olive oil
8 rashers smoked streaky bacon, diced
300g shallots or small onions, peeled but left whole
250g chestnut mushrooms, sliced or whole button mushrooms
2 garlic cloves, sliced
2 tsp dried mixed herbes de provence
500 ml red wine
400 ml beef stock
400g shortcrust or flaky pastry (for just a topping to a pie – 800g if you are going to completely encase the filling)
1 beaten egg, for glazing the pie

Heat the olive oil in a large, deep lidded casserole over a medium to high flame. Fry the beef cubes in batches until nicely browned and remove to a plate.

Once the meat is all browned, add a bit more olive oil to the pan if needed and fry the bacon lardons for a couple of minutes. Reduce the temperature under the pan to very low, add the onions, garlic and mushrooms to the pan and stir to coat with oil. Cover the pan, and allow the onions and mushrooms to sweat for 15 minutes or so until the onions are translucent and softened.

Raise the temperature under the pan again and sprinkle over 2 tblsp plain flour, and stir into the veg. Don’t worry if it looks a bit lumpy. Put the browned beef back in, together with the red wine, beef stock and herbs. Season well with good salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat to the barest minimum and cook for 1 ½ – 2 hours or so, until the meat is tender. Check the seasoning. Thicken a bit more if needed with some cornflour. Put into a nice deep ovenproof pie or casserole dish.  This quantity is enough for (approximately) a 22 x 35cm rectangular deep dish, or a 25cm round deep dish.

This stage can be done up to 2 days in advance.

Heat your oven to 200ºC/Gas 5.

Roll out the pastry to cover the meat. Frill the edges, and decorate as you wish. Lift onto the meat. Brush the pastry all over with a beaten egg. Make a couple of slashes in the pastry to allow steam to escape. Bake for 35-50 minutes until piping hot and nicely crispy and browned . Delicious with boiled or mashed potatoes and seasonal greens.

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