Neil Perry’s Guiness Beef Pie

Serves: 4 – 6

We rarely cook beef and when we do, it needs to be special.

And this pie is definitly that, especially with the homemade shortcrust pastry; pastry packing so much falvour compared to the store-bought variety, unless time was of the essence, not sure how you couldn’t make your own going-forward.

Well done Nat!

A while ago, we cooked the Bourke Street Bakery Humble Beef Pie and it was just the perfect, pie-hop chunky beef pie.

This pie is magnitudes richer. The opposite end of the pie menu to the Humble Beef Pie. A fancy Saturday night pie.

Served with potato puree and braised peas, it was such a treat. Add a glass of red and heaven.

Some Saturday nights in call for a pie. This particular pie gets full marks for meeting the brief.

Another Neil Perry homerun.


1/3 c extra virgin olive oil
1.2kg beef brisket or chuck, cut into 2.5cm chunks
2 small brown onions, sliced
1 carrot, diced
5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
4 sprigs of thyme
2 bay leaves
750ml Guinness beer
300ml chicken stock
2 tbsp butter
2 tbsp plain flour
1 sheet all-butter puff pastry
2 egg yolks, lightly beaten
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Ketchup to serve

For the shortcrust pastry

350gm plain flour
180gm cold unsalted butter diced
Pinch of fine salt
4 egg yolks


  1. For the shortcrust pastry, put the flour, butter and salt into a food processor and process to a breadcrumb-like texture. Add the egg yolks and, with the machine running, slowly add 1 1/2 tbsp iced water, adding just enough to form a dough. Turn out the dough onto a floured bench and knead gently, just until the pastry comes together, then wrap in plastic wrap and refridgerate for at least 30 minutes or until needed.
  2. Preheat the oven ton 150c.
  3. Heat half the olive oil in a large, heavy-based ovenproof saucepan or casserole and, working in batches, brown the beef, making sure you get it a good dark brown colour. Remove from the pan and set aside.
  4. Heat the rest of the oil in the same pan. Add the onions, carrot, celery, leek and garlic and cook, stirring regularly, until softened and caramelised.
  5. Return the meat to the pan, along with the thyme, bay leaf, Guinness, stock and 1 tsp of salt. then bring to a gentle simmer, skimming off any oil or scum that rises to the surface. Cover with a lid and cook in the oven for 2 – 3 hours or until the meat is very tender.
  6. Strain the meat and vegetables from the cooking liquid, keeping both in separate bowls.
  7. In a small saucepan, melt butter over medium heat, then add the flour and cook, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, until it is a deep golden brown and toasty smelling. Whisk in the strained cooking liquid and simmer, whisking constantly, until you have a smooth, thick gravy. Pour the gravy into the bowl of meat and vegetables and stir well. Check the seasoning of your pie filling, then leave to cool completely.
  8. When you are ready to assemble, preheat the oven to 200c and lightly grease your pie tin. On a flour-dusted bench, roll out the shortcrust pastryto a 5mm thickness and then cut out a cirlce 24 – 29cm in diameter. Use to line the base of your pie tim, then spoon in the pie filling.
  9. Lay out the puff pastry and cut out a ircle about 22cm in diameter. Use to top the pie, pressing the edges of the pastry firmly together all the way around. Trim the edges neatly – if you like, you can use the pastry offcuts to make some leaf decorations for the top of the pie.
  10. Brush the pie with beaten egg yolk, then poke a small hole in the centre with the tip of a paring knife to allow steam to escape. Bake on the middle shelf of the oven for about 25 – 20 minutes or until the pastry is puffed and deep golden. Serve immediately, with tomato sauce on the side.

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