About this recipe:The perfect meat pie has a base of shortcrust pastry for tenderness, a puff pastry lid for crispness, and a well-flavoured filling.
2 tablespoons dripping or oil
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
500 g lean minced beef
2 tablespoons plain flour
1/3 cup bought tomato sauce
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
1 1/4 cups beef stock
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 x basic shortcrust pastry recipe, or 4 sheets ready-rolled frozen shortcrust pastry
1.5 x basic puff pastry recipe, or 4 sheets ready-rolled frozen puff pastry
1 egg, beaten
Directions Prep:20min › Cook:40min › Ready in:1hr
Heat the dripping or oil in a medium frying pan. Add the onion and cook, stirring often, until the onion is soft. Add the minced beef, increase the heat to high and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon to break up any lumps for 6–8 minutes, or until the minced beef is brown. Sprinkle the flour over the meat and cook for 1 minute. Add the tomato sauce, Worcestershire sauce and beef stock. Bring to the boil, reduce the heat to medium and simmer, stirring occasionally to prevent the meat from sticking to the base of the pan, for 10 minutes, or until the sauce is thick. Stir in the parsley and season with salt and pepper. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool completely.
Preheat the oven to 200°C. Using a small plate about 17 cm in diameter as a guide, cut four circles from the shortcrust pastry and use them to line the base and sides of four 1-cup pie tins. Fill the pastry with the meat mixture – avoid spilling any on the edges.
Using the same plate as a guide, cut four circles from the puff pastry. Brush the shortcrust pastry edges of the pies with water to moisten and top with the puff pastry circle. Press the pastry edges together to secure. Trim the excess pastry with a sharp knife and crimp the edges. Cut a small cross in the centre of each pie and brush the top with beaten egg.
Bake the pies in the preheated oven for 10 minutes, reduce the oven temperature to 180°C and bake for a further 20 minutes, or until the pastry is puffed and golden.
Serve the pies immediately with creamy mashed potato and boiled green peas and pass some extra tomato sauce separately, if desired.