50 mlolive oil4beef cheeks, trimmed 1onion, finely chopped ½ eachcarrot and celery stalk, finely chopped 1 litre (4 cups)beef or brown chicken stock3 sprigs eachrosemary and thyme 1garlic head, halved horizontally1anchovy fillet, finely chopped3lamb kidneys (about 200gm), cleaned6oysters, such as Pacific, freshly shucked45 gmplain flour 45 gmsoftened butterTo serve:steamed cabbage, boiled potato and mushy peas (optional)Suet crust 500 gm (3⅓ cups) plain flour 200 gm chilled suet, coarsely grated1 tbspbaking powder
Preheat oven to 150C. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large frying pan over high heat, add beef cheeks, season to taste and cook, turning once, until browned (4-5 minutes). Transfer to a small roasting pan. Reduce heat to medium, add 2 tsp oil to frying pan, then add onion, carrot and celery and stir occasionally until golden (4-5 minutes). Add to beef cheeks with stock, herbs, garlic and anchovy, season to taste, bring to the simmer, cover with foil and braise in oven until beef cheeks are very tender (2½-3 hours).
Meanwhile, heat remaining oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat, add kidneys and cook, turning occasionally, until browned. Season to taste, coarsely chop, transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until required.
Remove beef cheeks from braising liquid, dice and add to kidney. Strain braising liquid into a saucepan (discard solids), bring to the simmer over medium heat and reduce to 375ml (12-15 minutes). Stir flour and butter in a small bowl to a smooth paste, whisk into simmering braising liquid and whisk continuously until thick and smooth (2-3 minutes). Cool to room temperature, add to beef cheek mixture with oysters and stir gently to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until well chilled.
For suet crust, combine flour, suet, baking powder and 2 tsp salt in a bowl, add 350ml cold water and mix with your hands to combine. Turn onto a lightly floured surface, knead lightly to form a dough (add a little extra flour if dough is too sticky), then roll out two-thirds of pastry to a 1cm-thick round and line a buttered and floured 2-litre pudding mould, letting edges overhang. Spoon in beef filling, mounding on top, then roll out remaining pastry to a round large enough to cover pudding. Place over filling, press edges to seal, then trim edges. Cover with a double layer of buttered baking paper and secure with kitchen string. Place in a large saucepan with a saucer in the bottom (this will help keep bottom from burning), fill pan with boiling water to 3cm below rim of pudding basin, cover with a lid and simmer over low-medium heat, topping up with extra water if necessary, until cooked through (3 hours). Stand for 5 minutes, then turn out and serve hot.
This recipe is from the June 2012 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.
“When I think English pies, this one naturally comes to mind, with its soft suet crust and oozy filling,” says Wise. “It’s great served with old-school sides: steamed cabbage, boiled potato and mushy peas.”
At A Glance
Serves 6 people
At A Glance
Serves 6 people
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