A good steak & kidney pie

A good steak & kidney pie

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(24 ratings)

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Cooking time

Takes around 2¼ hours, plus chilling

Skill level

Moderately easy

Servings

Serves 6

An old favourite - a traditional steak and kidney pie, comfort food at its best.

Nutrition and extra info

Nutrition info

Nutrition

kcalories
831
protein
54g
carbs
44g
fat
50g
saturates
26g
fibre
3g
sugar
0g
salt
1g

Ingredients

For the pastry

  • 250g plain flour, plus extra for rolling
  • 140g cold unsalted butter, roughly cubed
  • 1 large egg yolk
  • 1 small egg whisked with 1 tbsp milk, for the egg wash

For the filling

  • 1 ox kidney, about 400g/14oz, get it fresh from your butcher. Pig's and lamb's kidneys aren't suitable as they only need short cooking
  • 1kg trimmed British top rump beef
  • 250g flat mushrooms, unpeeled but wiped with a damp cloth
  • 3 tbsp groundnut or vegetable oil
  • 100g unsalted butter
  • 1 large onion, peeled and thickly chopped
  • 50-85g plain flour, depending on how thick you like your gravy
  • 600ml off-the-boil water
  • 1 tbsp Marigold Swiss vegetable bouillon powder
  • 1 large bay leaf

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Method

  1. It's important to cook the meat a day ahead, so that you can discard any fat that has risen to the top, and so that the pastry doesn't slump in the face of a too-warm filling, so up to 48 hours ahead -make the pastry. Whizz the flour and a pinch of fine sea salt together for a few seconds in a food processor, then add the butter and whizz until the mixture looks like coarse breadcrumbs. Whisk together the egg yolk and 3 tbsp water and whizz with the pastry until it collects in a ball. Wrap in cling film and leave it to rest in the fridge for at least one hour.
  2. Cut button-mushroom-sized lobes of kidney from the white central core (discarding). Cut the beef into bite-sized cubes and cut the mushrooms into chunks.
  3. Heat 1 tbsp of the oil in a large, heavy frying pan over a medium-high heat. Throw in the kidney and fry until lightly coloured. Tip into a colander to drain.
  4. Wipe out the frying pan and return it to a low-medium heat, adding 25g/1oz of the butter and 1 tbsp oil. Tip in the onion and fry for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, until soft and slightly golden. Transfer to a large casserole, using a slotted spoon.
  5. Preheat the oven to 160C/gas 3/fan 140C. Tip the 85g/3oz flour into a large plastic bag, and season it generously. Throw in the beef and shake until lightly floured.Return the frying pan to a mediumhigh heat, adding a little more oil and butter if needed. Shake off any excess flour (reserving it) then fry the beef in batches until golden-brown. As each batch is done, transfer it to the casserole.
  6. Adding more oil and butter to the frying pan if necessary, fry the mushrooms for about 2 minutes until starting to wilt, then add them to the casserole with the drained kidneys, hot water, bouillon powder and bay leaf, plus the excess flour in the bag if you like a thick gravy. Stir well, cover and cook in the oven for 75-90 minutes until the meat is tender and the sauce is thick. Cool thoroughly, then put in the fridge (preferably overnight) so any fat will solidify – it can then be skimmed off and discarded.
  7. In the morning - return the pastry to cool room temperature, then roll it out thinly on a wellfloured surface. Invert a 28-30x23cm, 6.5cm deep pie dish on to the pastry. Mentally add an extra 1cm all round, then use the dish as a guide to cut out the pastry lid. From the remnants, cut out enough 6cm-wide strips of pastry to go round the dish – they should cover the flat rim and about halfway down the insides.
  8. Lightly butter the rim of the dish and line it with the strip(s) of pastry, sealing any joins with a little dab of water. Butter the shoulders of a pie raiser or an upturned egg cup and stand it in the middle. Spoon in the meat mixture to come level with the top of the dish. Don’t overfill: reserve any excess gravy to serve hot with the pie.
  9. Brush the pastry rim with a little water, then drape the pastry lid over it, pinching the edges to seal. Cover with cling film and keep in the fridge if not baking immediately.
  10. Finally, an hour before serving - preheat the oven to 200C/gas 6/fan 180C. Make four slashes in the lid of the pie, then brush with the egg wash. Bake for 35-45 minutes until the pastry is golden brown, turning the heat down 10-20º after about 20 minutes. Remove the pie from the oven and leave it to rest for around 10 minutes before cutting into it.

Recipe from Good Food magazine, October 2002

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Comments

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gemmaeyre's picture

Really tasty pie. My husband & I enjoyed it. Just what you need on a cold winters day

helen707's picture

Delicious, I just used reg braising steak and cooked the day before by simmering on the hob. Still tender and tasty, pig kidney which added a lovely flavour to the gravy along with half a bottle of beer. We all enjoyed the pie with mash and veg. A great plan ahead dish.

helers's picture
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This is delicious but I make a few alterations. Add 1 bottle of Guinness and top up with marigold stock, also add some carrot and thyme. I can't get Ox Kidney so use lambs but add it later, about 30 mins before the end of cooking.

As I live on my own I make individual pies and use ready rolled butter puff pasty (Sainsbury's).

However the smell when cooking is lovely and I can't wait for the pot to cool. I transfer one helping into an individual dish and top it with some herby dumplings and put it back in the oven for about 30 mins. Serve this with potatoes and green beans - delicious. With the rest of the casserole I follow the recipe as directed the following day with the pastry top.

I give my individual pies to friends and they all love them.

zoetruman's picture

I made this pie for the first time and it was absolutely beautuful! My husband is rather a fussy eater so I kept to the exact recipe and timings. Using high quality ingredients is key, and the ox kidney renders a lovely flavour, without disintegrating into a mush with the lengthy cooking. However, I did cheat a little by using bought shortcrust pastry!

basilescargot's picture

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flirtinflight's picture
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The pastry was really lovely. I had to use veal kidney as you cannot get ox in Abu Dhabi. Well worth the time it took - I was very pleased with myself when I presented the pie to my table of guests.

valleybaker46's picture
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Made this last night and it was lovely! Used ready made pastry instead and left out the kidney and everybody loved it! Served with my famous mash ;P

lyoung29's picture
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Boyfriend got to make this for himself as I don't eat offal, but it smelt lovely.
He only used 500g steak and got 3 good sized portions from it! Pie smelt very rich and he thoroughly enjoyed it.
Great idea to cook filling the day before-amazing how much fat you can discard.

mfztsrc2's picture
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delicious recipe. i agree about the pastry comment though (as there's better pastry recipes out there) and would perhaps use ready-made puff pastry next time

gillianblackburn's picture
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Great recipe, but agree with other comments that it was difficult to follow and badly written. Once I'd read it over for the tenth time it made sense.

I didn't do the meat overnight or leave the pastry over night - and it was still good.

bells74's picture
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sorry forgot to rate :-)

bells74's picture
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Made this for the family yesterday and it was a huge success. If you can do use the ox kidney which isnt always easy to get, but is much nicer than the lamb or pigs kidney. I didnt have the Swiss marigold but used beef stock instead, and used a diabetic recipe from my mums cookbook to do the pastry. The filling was fantastic, boodles of taste, and a great reminder of how tasty some of our traditional recipes are. Will definitely be making this again, well worth the effort :-)

san67fortu's picture

loved this! added tom puree and worcester sauce as well. and i cheated with shop bought pastry. Nobody noticed the difference or are we just a family of phillistines? will cook again without the kidney just for a change.

niglov's picture

Why, oh why, do people who do not like kidneys, and therefore leave them out, even bother to tell us about it. This is a recipe for steak and kidney pie! It's very good and non-kidney lovers should comment elsewhere!!

thepearsons's picture

Thumbs up for this recipe I changed the pastry to suet and my son asked for seconds.

vecten's picture

Why would you want to make a steak and kidney pie with vegetable stock? Use a beef stock cube dissolved in guinness and add a teaspoon of bovril for a decent colour.

melanieg40's picture

I would like to follow this recipe as I love S&K pie, but the method reads like a rather confusing version of war and peace!! Anyway, have taken the tips of the users who made it with ready made pastry and I wont bother with kidneys. But it looks and sounds so delicious. Will report back when i've finished.

jul34es's picture

made this pie ages ago and it was so easy to do and tasted great,as i used the magazine which is dated october 2002 i also did the side dishes that went with it and they tasted great too.

stephilou's picture
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Have made this several times now. But don't put mushrooms or kidney in (some of the family are a bit fussy!!) so it is just a steak pie! I use a can of Guiness for the gravy! Now it's a Steak n Ale pie!!
It is worth cooking the meat the day before as the flavour seems to improve!

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