This weekend I conquered my pie making fears and it turned out miles better than I could have expected. Both Rich and I have a soft spot for the magnificent Pieminister Moo and Blue pie, seriously go try one, so decided this would be the flavour I would replicate for my own pie. I went with beef, ale and stilton for my main ingredients, Rich chose Bombardier ale, one of our friend's favourite drink choices, to marinade the beef in. I soaked the beef in 400ml of Bombardier, crushed garlic, a handful of peppercorns and some fresh thyme for about 4 hours but apparently leaving it overnight is best.
I then sifted out the beef and rolled it in some pepper and herby flour and fried it until mostly brown then sifted it out again.I added celery carrots and 4 shallot halves to the pan and added some of the ale marinade and some redcurrant jelly and cooked for about 10 mins then I re-added the beef, paprika and 450ml of beef stock and let that cook down, covered, for about 40mins. To my joy a lovely thick gravy had formed in the saucepan and it smelled amazing. I poured it into my pie dish and dotted lumps of stilton before adding the puff pastry top and some air holes.
I cannot get over how easy it was to make, I was really expecting the flavour not to be as full and strong as it turned out to be. Definitely the best thing I have cooked for a while, Rich is already eager for the next pie installment. Perfect Winter fuel. Go forth now and make pie!