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‘the chairman’ beef lager & shiitake pie with Innis & Gunn Original Oak Aged Beer

Jun 1 2012

‘the chairman’ beef lager & shiitake pie with Innis & Gunn Original Oak Aged Beer

Serves 4

  • 1 quantity of suet pastry with 1tbsp roasted and coarsely ground coriander seeds added with the flour (see recipe below)
  • 1 free range egg, lightly beaten, to glaze
  • For the filling
  • 3 tbsp groundnut oil
  • 1 red onion, diced
  • 2 celery sticks, diced
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 400g beef chuck or brisket, cut into 3cm dice (Tristan used beef cheeks when making the film)
  • A knob of fresh ginger, cut into fine matchsticks
  • 120g shiitake mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 large cinnamon stick, broken in half
  • 3 star anise
  • ½ tsp fennel seeds
  • Juice and grated zest of 1 mandarin or clementine
  • 5 tbsp oyster sauce
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 40g yellow rock sugar (available from Chinese shops) or granulated sugar
  • 600ml lager such as Innis & Gunn Original Oak Aged Beer
  • 1 tbsp cornflour

To make the filling, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large frying pan, add the onion, celery and garlic and cook until lightly browned.  Transfer to a large saucepan with a slotted spoon.  Add the remaining oil to the pan, then add the beef and cook until browned all over. Transfer the beef to the saucepan too.  Add all the remaining ingredients except the cornflour to the saucepan and bring to a simmer.  Cover and cook gently for 1 ½ to 2 hours, until the beef is tender.

Mix the cornflour to a paste with a tablespoon of water, stir it into the filling mixture and cook for a few minutes longer to thicken slightly.  Taste and adjust the seasoning with sugar and soy sauce if necessary; it should taste very slightly sweet, with aromatic undertones from the star anise and citrus.  Remove from the heat and leave to cool.

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.  Roll out about two-thirds of pastry on a lightly floured surface to about 3mm thick and use to line a pie plate.  Add the filling and then brush the edges of the pastry with a little beaten egg.  Roll out the remaining pastry to about 3mm thick and cover the pie with it, trimming off the excess and pressing the edges together to seal. Brush the top with beaten egg and make a couple of holes in the centre to let out steam.  Bake for 35-40 minutes, until golden brown.  Good served with roasted sweet potatoes and wilted Asian greens, such as pak choi.

Suet pastry recipe (makes about 750g)

400g plain flour

a pinch of salt

200g suet

About 120-150ml milk

Put the flour and salt into a bowl and stir in the suet.  Gradually stir in enough milk to make a fairly stiff dough – be sure to add it very slowly or you might find the mixture has suddenly become saturated.  If this does happen mix in a little extra flour.

Turn the pastry out on to a lightly floured board and knead for a couple of minutes, until smooth – you can treat this pastry more firmly than ones made with butter.  Wrap in clingfilm and chill for about 30 minutes before use.

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