Steak Pie for the New Year

On my bucket list is to experience New Year’s festivities in Scotland. Called “Hogmanay”, the torchlit processions that light up Edinburgh, particularly along the Royal Mile, are a sight to behold. A mix of Scandinavian and native customs, the new year celebrations in Scotland are usually spread over several days. 
Part of Scottish Hogmanay lore includes the First Footing. Tradition dictates that whomever first crosses the threshold and enters the home in the New Year, sets the “luck of the house” for the coming year. Most auspicious of all is a dark-haired male, bearing coal, whisky, and shortbread! 
Along with shortbread and black bun, the steak pie rounds out traditional Hogmanay foods. A rich and savory “pot pie” type of dish, there are myriad recipes available. Try the one below, adapted from Scotland4theSenses, to get your New Year off to a hearty beginning. Serve with chappit tatties and mushy peas.

Ale-Braised Scottish Steak Pie


* 1 package (400g or 14oz) ready-made puff pastry

* 1 egg, beaten for egg wash

Steak Pie Filling

* 1 pound braising steak, cut into 1 inch cubes and seasoned with salt & pepper

* 1 tablespoon butter

* 1/2 cup mushrooms, chopped into large pieces

* 2 medium onions, chopped into large pieces

* 3 garlic cloves, chopped into large pieces

* 2 large carrots, chopped into large pieces

* 3 stalks of celery, chopped into large pieces

* 1/2 cup homemade vegetable stock

* 1/2 cup red wine

* 1 bottle of non-hoppy beer, preferably a dark ale, porter or stout

* 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Bouquet Garni (Add/Subtract Whatever You Like Here)

* 1 handful fresh flat leaf parsley

* 3 sprigs of fresh thyme

* 1 bay leaf

* Cheesecloth and kitchen string to enclose the bouquet

Cooking Instructions:

Stage 1 - Pre-cook Steak Pie Filling

1. Start by preheating your oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

2. In a large Dutch oven or oven-safe stockpot, heat some oil over medium-high heat until it starts to sputter

3. With the oil piping hot, carefully place your cubes of beef into the pot. Sear the beef for 3-5 minutes until all sides are lightly brown

4. Take your beef pieces out of the stockpot and set aside on a plate or a bowl for the time being

5. Back in your stockpot, melt your butter and add your garlic and onions. Mix around for 1-2 minutes as they start to sweat and become translucent

6. Next, add in your carrots, celery and mushrooms. Stir around for a bit, then continue to cook for 3-5 minutes

7. Add back in your steak pieces and mix everything well together

8. Next, pour in your vegetable stock, red wine and beer, and mix everything around to let the liquid reach all corners of the pot

9. In a separate bowl, mix your flour with a little bit of water to create a thick slurry. When it's well mixed together - and you don't see clumps of flour - pour the slurry into your main pot

10. Before placing into the oven, submerge your bouquet garni into the pot and cover your stockpot

11. Transfer the stockpot from the stove into the oven, and let the filling bake for 2 1/2 hours

Stage 2 - Prepare Steak Pie

1. After the steak pie filling has baked for several hours, take it out of the oven and remove the bouquet garni

2. Uncover the stockpot and let your filling cool for at least 20 minutes. You don't want it to be too hot before baking, otherwise your puff pastry will sweat and soften

3. In the meantime, take your puff pastry and lay it on a well-floured flat surface. Use a rolling pin to get the puff pastry to ~1/4 inch thickness

4. Once your pastry is ready and your filling cooled, it's time to put your steak pie together

Stage 3 - Finishing Off the Steak Pie

1. Take a 2 quart casserole dish and pour your cooled filling into the dish

2. Before adding the puff pastry, carefully brush some egg wash around the edges. This will keep the puff pastry from sticking to the dish

3. Next, carefully layer the puff pastry on top, then cut the excess dough from around the edges of your casserole dish

4. Brush the top of your puff pastry with some egg wash, then place your steak pie into the oven

5. Bake for 35 minutes at 350 degrees Fahrenheit, let rest for a few minutes before serving.

Blessings of good health, wealth, and wisdom for you in this new year!


~ Erika

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