Laurel Street Blog

Ode to a Meat Pie. Plus 100 other things I have to do.

Posted on: April 2, 2009

Do click on this recipe. And cook it. And devour it. Potato-Topped Beef Pie by John Torode from the cookbook Beef and Other Bovine Matters.

But back to the food. Meat and Potatoes. Sounds a little too ‘Hungry Man’ for you? Not on your life. Check out this beautiful presentation:

Straight from the oven. Please excuse the artlessness of my kitchen counter, fresh from the battlefield.

Straight from the oven... the brown stuff oozing from behind the potatoes is gravy. Totally delicious gravy. Please excuse the artlessness of my kitchen counter, fresh from the battlefield.

I must say this recipe was not one of my 30 minute Food & Wine wonders, but it wasn’t difficult either. The active time is actually very short – mainly you wait during stages while the (ready made! yay!) pie crust pre-bakes, then the whole meat pie goes into the oven. So enjoy a glass of wine while you cook – the prep for this meal is non-stress.

Bonus, this meal is very inexpensive. Two pounds of chuck steak, two baking potatoes and a refrigerated pie pastry – that’s your whole shopping list. Everything else is in your pantry.

Lelite’s Culianria is understandably proprietary about their recipes, so I won’t go into too much detail about it. Basically you brown the cubed steak and some onions in butter. Butter is key here, because in a bit you will add a little flour which will combine with the butter and thicken into a gravy that is just plain heaven. This is thinned with beef broth and left to simmer, but next time, I’ll add a 1/2 cup (or more) of red wine to the beef broth before the simmer to make it taste more like boeuf bourguignon.

And speaking of tips – check out this fantastic post I found on SteamyKitchen.com Steak: How to Turn Cheap “Choice” Steak into Gucci “Prime” Steak. The secret in a nutshell is a dry marinade of good Kosher salt (Kosher salt is mandatory, I’m afraid) for one hour before cooking, then rinsed and dried thoroughly. This tip is a miracle. Next time I make the pie, I’ll tenderize the chuck steaks this way before cubing and cooking.

P.S. The Leite’s Culinaria Web site was a real find. I owe Karen of Everyday Special a tip of the hat for this discovery. It’s all so very good. Thanks Karen!)

P.P.S. Now that dinner’s done I can get back to the rest of my house to-do list:

I'm glad I just stopped at one page. Sheesh. Oh, and get some new wine glasses, too.

I'm just SUPER motivated to do VERY FEW of these things.

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4 Responses to "Ode to a Meat Pie. Plus 100 other things I have to do."

Oh how I wish I had been at YOUR table for dinner!! That looks great. I think I may just try it myself – any styling tips??
Your list is just too long and I love “wash dogs” – all I have to do is think “wash Buddy” and he hides under the bushes. He will soon have his favorite bathing spot back again once the pool overhaul gets done. It is as bad as having the yard dug up the first time!!
Hope your weather is behaving today — tornados, hail, rain, high winds for us. Just another Spring day in BR!!

Question: did you chop the chuck yourself, or buy it already chopped? I think chopping it ourselves sounds like grand fun! Never done it before, but I did watch my Grandma do such things – even wringing the necks of the chickens (we won’t go there, for sure!).

Haha – I actually bought two chuck steaks and cubed it myself. I wasn’t too particular about it. In terms of plate presentation, getting that first slice out is a bit of a trick!

P.S. I corrected a typo – I would add red wine to the simmering broth!

Hey Nathan – how fantastic to have another ‘Laurel’, even if we are on other sides of the world! I love John Torode too, his Red Beef Curry recipe is too good. Love your blog!
Millie ^_^

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Laurel Street Blog

Nate and Louis

Well, hey there. I'm Nathan and this is the Laurel Street Blog. It's a place for talking about design, decor and DIY (with small amounts of snarkery snuck in). I'm a pretty restless guy who loves house projects and lives in a 150+ year old cottage on Laurel Street in New Orleans. Since the house always has something going on with it (or falling off of it) I'm subsequently blessed with a never-ending supply of Web content to share. Oh - and you can drop me a line anytime LaurelStreetNola@gmail.com. Enjoy!

Can I get a tweet up in here? Follow along @LaurelStreet

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