Nothing can compare with my mother’s steak and kidney pie. I still use the same recipe with just a small tweak; where she would have used lard or dripping to cook the meat, I use olive oil. As an all-round favourite, steak and kidney pie ticks all the boxes. It’s a verysatisfying dish that also freezes well for a delicious midweek treat without any fuss.
- 2 sheep’s kidneys, washed, skinned, halved, core removed, cut into 1.25 cm/1⁄2 inch cubes
- 500 g/1 lb stewing steak (blade, flank, skirt or round), cut into 2.5 cm/1 inch cubes
- 3 tablespoons plain flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1⁄2 cup water
- 2 tablespoons parsley, finely chopped
- 1 quantity flaky pastry
- 1 egg, beaten
Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/gas mark 7. Put the flour and seasonings into a plastic bag and add the steak and kidney pieces, shaking to cover well. Heat the oil in a heavy pan and brown the meat, stirring constantly for about 5 minutes. Add the water, cover tightly and simmer for at least one hour or until well cooked. Cool and stir in the parsley. Roll out the pastry until it is slightly larger than the lid of the pie dish. Cut a strip about 2.5 cm/1 inch wide and place it around the dampened rim of the dish. Brush with cold water and spoon the steak and kidney mixture into the dish, then cover with the remaining pastry, pressing into the pastry rim to seal. With thumb or knife end press a pattern around the edge of the pie and glaze with the egg, making a hole in the middle to allow the steam to escape. Bake in a hot oven for 20 minutes (220°C/425°F/gas mark 7), then lower the heat to moderate (180°C/350°F/gas mark 4) and cook for a further 30 minutes or until the pastry is golden. Of course the pie should be served with lashings of mashed potato or sometimes champ, where scallions are finely chopped and cooked in a little milk and then mixed through the creamy spuds.
We hope you enjoyed reading this post by Pat Whelan of James Whelan Butchers. Pat is a 5th generation butcher, cook book author and the director of James Whelan Butchers with shops in Clonmel, the Avoca Handweavers Rathcoole and Kilmacanogue, Dunnes Stores Cornelscourt, Rathmines and Swords in Dublin. Sign up to our newsletter for more updates from James Whelan Butchers