Steak and kidney pies

    2 hours 10 min

    A crisp filo pastry topping makes an attractive change from the more traditional lid of puff or shortcrust on these individual pies – and it's lighter and less fatty too. Serve with generous helpings of vegetables such as freshly cooked carrots and sugarsnap peas, plus more potatoes to boost the starchy carbohydrates.

    20 people made this

    Serves: 4 

    • 4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
    • 340 g (12 oz) lean rump steak, trimmed of fat and cut into 4 cm (1½ in) pieces
    • 2 lamb's kidneys, cored and diced
    • 250 g (8½ oz) shallots, halved
    • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
    • 2 tsp fresh thyme leaves
    • 1 bay leaf
    • 1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
    • 150 ml (5 fl oz ) beef stock, preferably home-made
    • 150 ml (5 fl oz) stout
    • 225 g (8 oz) button mushrooms, halved
    • 3 carrots, cut into chunks
    • 250 g (8½ oz) new potatoes, scrubbed and cut into 2.5 cm (1 in) dice
    • 8 large sheets filo pastry, about 36 x 18 cm (14 x 7 in) each, thawed if frozen
    • salt and pepper

    Prep:1hr50min  ›  Cook:20min  ›  Ready in:2hr10min 

    1. Heat 2 tbsp of the oil in a large pan, add the steak and fry for 2–3 minutes, turning to brown the pieces on all sides. Remove with a draining spoon and set aside. Add the kidneys to the pan and brown for 1–2 minutes, then remove with the draining spoon.
    2. Fry the shallots for 1 minute, then return the steak and kidney to the pan, together with the garlic, thyme, bay leaf, Worcestershire sauce, stock and stout. Stir well and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat, cover and simmer gently for 1 hour. Add the mushrooms, carrots and potatoes, and stir to mix. Cover again and simmer for a further 30 minutes.
    3. Preheat the oven to 190°C (375°F, gas mark 5). With a draining spoon, lift out the steak and kidney mixture and divide among four 360 ml (12 fl oz) pie dishes. Discard the bay leaf. The ingredients will have produced a lot of liquid, so boil for about 5 minutes or until reduced to about 450 ml (15 fl oz). Season to taste, then pour over the meat and allow to cool slightly.
    4. Lightly brush a sheet of filo with some of the remaining 2 tbsp oil. Place another sheet on top and brush lightly with more oil. Scrunch up the 2 sheets together to fit the top of a dish and lay it over the meat, then trim all around the edge with scissors. Repeat with the remaining 3 dishes. Bake the pies for 20 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and the filling is hot.

    Some more ideas

    Add a strip of pared orange zest with the garlic and herbs in step 2. Remove the orange zest at the beginning of step 3, and add 150 g (5½ oz) diced swede, 2 sliced celery sticks and 125 g (4½ oz) potatoes with the mushrooms. * Instead of kidneys, add 1 can smoked oysters, about 85 g, drained, to the pie dishes before covering with pastry.

    Plus points

    Suet or puff pastry is traditionally used for steak and kidney pies, but both of these pastries are high in saturated fat. The filo used here is very low in fat, and its light texture complements the robust flavours of the steak and kidney. Brushing it with olive oil rather than the more usual butter helps to reduce the saturated fat even further.

    Each serving provides

    A, B1, B2, B6, B12, C, E, niacin, selenium, zinc * C, folate, iron, potassium

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