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Beef and Guinness Pie

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A classic Beef and Guinness Pie with tender chunks of beef and a delicious gravy. Make with traditional puff pastry or a tasty Sour Cream Pastry.


For the Filling

For the Sour-Cream Pastry

To Assemble the Pies


For the Filling

  1. Heat a few tablespoons of oil in a large saucepan which can hold all of the ingredients later.
  2. Add the onions, garlic and thyme.
  3. Cook over low heat for 30-40 minutes, or until the onions have become soft and translucent.
  4. Increase the heat to medium-high, and continue stirring the onions until they start to  brown and caramelise.
  5. Use a slotted spoon to remove the caramelised onions to a plate.
  6. Preheat the oven to 180°C (350°F).
  7. Add more oil to the pan.
  8. Brown the beef in batches until they are golden on all sides.
  9. Remove the browned beef to a plate and set aside.
  10. Pour half of the Guinness into the saucepan and let it bubble away for 1-2 minutes.
  11. Use a wooden spoon to scrape any bits from the pan.
  12. Sprinkle over the flour and cook for 1-2 minutes.
  13. Add the remaining Guinness, together with the beef stock, bay leaves, carrots, and caramelised onions.
  14. Season with sea salt and pepper.
  15. Cover the saucepan with a tight-fitting lid.
  16. Place the saucepan into the oven and bake for 2 to 2½ hours, or until the beef is tender.
  17. Add the mushrooms, and continue cooking on the stove for about 5-10 minutes until the mushrooms have softened.
  18. Taste again for seasoning.
  19. Use two forks to gently break up the chunks of meat.
  20. Let the saucepan and the filling cool to room temperature before placing in the fridge or proceeding to assemble the pies.

For the Sour-Cream Pastry

  1. Place the butter and flour into the bowl of a stand mixer.
  2. Using the flat-paddle attachment, beat until the mixture resembles wet sand.
  3. Add the sour cream.
  4. Beat until the mixture comes together into a ball of dough.
  5. Wrap the dough in clingfilm.
  6. Chill the dough in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

To Assemble the Pies

  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C (390°F).
  2. Roll out the dough until it is about 5mm thick.
  3. Cut out pieces of the dough which are big enough to line the bottom and sides of your pie tins.
  4. Fill the pastry shells with some of the meat pie filling.
  5. Make the egg wash by beating the egg and milk together in a small bowl.
  6. Cut out pieces of the dough which are big enough to form the lid of your pies.
  7. Lightly brush the rim of the pastry with some egg wash.
  8. Place the lids on top of each pie.
  9. Use your fingertips to seal the edges of the pie together.
  10. Brush the tops of the pies with some egg wash.
  11. Use a knife or scissors to cut a vent in each pie.
  12. Bake for 20-30 minutes, or until the pastry is golden.

Kitchen Notes

If your filling is a bit too thin or runny, you can thicken the sauce with some cornflour. Simply dissolve 1-2 tablespoons of cornflour in some water, and stir this into the mixture until it has thickened to your liking. You may not need all of the cornflour mixture.

Ideas for Leftovers
This recipe produces more filling than you will need to make the pies. The filling is essentially a beef stew which is delicious eaten as it is with some mashed potatoes or roast potatoes. I also like to use the leftover filling to make a large pie in an oven-proof dish with just a pastry lid.

Instead of the Sour-Cream Pastry, you can also use shortcrust pastry for the bottom of the pies, and puff pastry for the lids.

Freezing Tips
To freeze the pies, ready for a quick snack or lunch at a later time, make the pies as per the recipe. Once you have covered each pie with some pastry, pop the whole muffin tin into the freezer. When the pies are frozen, remove them from the tin and place them in a zip-lock freezer bag.
You can bake the pies when they are frozen (no need to defrost), brushing them with some egg-wash before popping them into the oven. They will need an extra 5 to 10 minutes of baking time.

All recipes on this website state temperatures for a regular oven (i.e. a conventional oven without fan). If you have a convection oven with a fan, please consult the manufacturer’s handbook on how to adjust the temperature and baking time accordingly.

To convert from cups to grams, and vice-versa, please see this handy Conversion Chart for Basic Ingredients.