Flakey puff pastry encases a delicious filling made with diced beef, onions, tomatoes and herbs served with a traditional parsley sauce and creamy mash.


  • For the filling

  • 1kg finely diced beef chuck

  • 2 large onions, finely diced

  • 2 tbsp plain flour

  • 1 tsp English mustard powder

  • 1 tbsp tomato puree

  • 4 flat mushrooms, finely chopped

  • 1 bayleaf

  • 2 sprigs of thyme

  • 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce

  • 300ml brown ale

  • For the short crust pastry

  • 500g plain flour

  • 250g cold butter

  • Water

  • Salt

  • 1 egg, beaten (for glazing)

  • Frozen puff pastry

  • For the parsley liquor

  • 25g butter

  • 25g plain flour

  • 300ml chicken stock

  • 1 bunch of flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped

  • 1 tsp malt vinegar

  • For the mash

  • 1.5 kg of Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and cut in half

  • 200ml double cream, hot

  • 75g melted butter

  • Pinch of nutmeg

  • Salt and pepper


  • 1.

    Line the base of the pie tin/tins with shortcrust pastry and leave in the fridge to rest.

  • 2.

    In a heavy based casserole dish, dust the chuck, the onions and add the beef in the flour and mustard powder and brown off in 1 tablespoon of vegetable oil. Remove from the pan and place on absorbent paper while you cook the onions in the same pan.

  • 3.

    Add the meat back to the pan with the onions and the mushrooms, cook for a few minutes then add the brown ale to deglaze the pan. Add the bay leaf and thyme. Add the Worcestershire sauce and the tomato puree. Add a splash of brown stock, if needed, to loosen the mix.

  • 4.

    For the best results, cook for 2 hours, either in the oven at 170c or on top of the stove with the lid on. When the filling is made put in the fridge to cool. This will get better with time so don’t worry if you don’t get around to making the pie today.

  • To make the pie:

  • 1.

    Take the filling and fill your pastry case to the top. Cut out a square of puff pastry to make a lid for the pie. Using a little water ensure the edges are all stuck down and crimp the edges with a fork, brush with egg wash and make a whole in the top to allow steam to escape. Bake in the oven at 170 degrees for 30-40 minutes until the pie is golden brown.

  • To make the liquor:

  • 1.

    Melt the butter in a pan and add the flour, stir for 1 minute and slowly add the chicken stock. Add more as the sauce starts to thicken – don’t stop stirring or you’ll end up with a lumpy mess. Add the parsley and the vinegar, season with salt and ground black pepper. Blitz in a liquidiser and pour into a gravy boat.

  • To make the mash:

  • 1.

    Cut the potatoes in half and bring to the boil in cold salted water. Cook with a lid on until soft. Drain and leave to steam with a cloth over the top. Mash in a ricer and add the cream and melted butter, and season with  salt and pepper and nutmeg.

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