Tuesday 28 June 2011

Good Enough to be British Venison and Ale Pie

When I made this I had two enough for two small casserole dishes, and it was liked by my husband so much he nearly ate one on his own, and when another friend was over and he ate the other small pot, so if an American can cook this British classic and have it gobbled down by British men then I think I’m doing a good job!

350-450g (just less than 1lb) diced venison (or you could use beef)
3 medium carrots
1 large onion
2 sheets pre-made puff pastry (you probably won’t need all)
1-2 small potatoes
3 cloves garlic
2 cups mushrooms of your choice (100g)
¼ c whole meal flour (might not need it all, you can use regular white flour but I try to add extra nutrition when I can.)
1c prepared beef stock (usually half a stock cube prepared)
250-300ml good British Ale, I used Abbot Ale.
½ tsp. dried thyme
1 tbsp. butter
1 tbsp oil

To start:
Peel and slice into chunks, carrots and potatoes.
Dice onion and garlic.
Slice mushrooms.
Prepare the stock.

For the stew:
Heat oil and butter in a large stock pot.
Add in venison and brown for about 5-7 minutes. Then add about half the whole wheat flour and coat, continuously stirring 2-3 minutes till coated.
Salt and Pepper and add thyme.
Add the rest of the veggies, and sauté for a few more minutes.
Next add half the ale and the stock and bring to a boil.
You want a really thick consistency in the stew, so if it’s not getting thick, mix a little of the ale with the remaining whole wheat flour, and add it in. If it’s getting too thick add the rest of the ale, and just let it boil. Simmer for a good hour, until everything is melted together
Once the stew is cooked through where everything is tender, and you’ve tasted to adjust seasoning you can begin to assemble the pie.

Take your casserole dish and line it gently with some of the puff pastry (usually half of one sheet stretch it out if you need to.)
Ladle from the bottom all the big chunks into a casserole dish, if you have more that will fit in one, put it in another dish, we want most of the meat and veg in the pie instead of all the juice.
Once the casserole dishes are filled, take the remaining puff pastry sheets and roll over the top gently of the casserole dishes, it’s ok for them to hang over the side.

Bake in a 200C (400F) oven for about 30-45 minutes, keep an eye on it, we just want a golden brown puff pastry.
Once it’s done it will be extremely hot, serve with mixed veg and enjoy!

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