Friday, November 15, 2013

Cabernet Steak Pot Pie

What do you do with leftover roasts?  Savory pies are a great way to use leftovers. We eat plenty of French dip sandwiches and salads topped with sliced steak, but I rarely make pot pie. I think with the cold weather coming in, we needed a comfort food meal and a pot pie is definitely comfort food!

I had an open bottle of Rex Goliath cabernet, a leftover roast, and a few baked potatoes in the fridge, so no wasting! To make this pot pie a little different and more "gourmet", I added the red wine and some herbs to the gravy. It was delicious!

Dear hubby and his brother requested a deer version next time.  That's an awesome idea, especially since we have venison stock and plenty of meat in the freezer. Oh, yes, that plan is already forming. Cabernet and venison are so good together. Also, venison instead of beef? It's a natural substitution in our house.

about 1 1/2 lbs leftover cooked beef roast or steak, trimmed and diced
2-3 leftover baked potatoes, chopped with skins on
1 small yellow onion, minced
1-2 cloves garlic, minced
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
3/4 cup frozen petite peas
4 Tablespoons butter, divided
3 Tablespoons AP flour
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
2 1/2 cups beef broth
1/4 cup + 2 Tablespoons Cabernet Sauvignon wine
1/2 a bay leaf
1/8 teaspoon ground thyme
a squeeze of lemon juice
black pepper and sea salt to taste
1 recipe Pie Crust No. 3
1 egg, beaten

1. Saute 1 Tablespoon butter and the onion, garlic, and carrots until softened. Add peas and steak and cook until just warmed.

2. Prepare your pie dish, line a large pie dish with bottom layer of pie crust as described in Pie Crust No. 3 recipe.

3. Fill pie dish with sauteed vegetables and steak. Add the chopped baked potato pieces.

4. Prepare the sauce by making a roux.  Melt the remaining butter. Add the flour and cook until it turns light brown.  Add the wine, then beef broth while whisking to make a smooth gravy.  Add the tomato paste, bay leaf, thyme, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Bring to a simmer and cook until slightly thickened.

5. Pour gravy over the pot pie filling. Top with second layer of pie crust and crimp edges to seal. Poke a few holes in the center for venting.  Brush beaten egg on top crust. This will make it a lovely brown.

6. Bake in a preheated 350F oven for 30-45 minutes, or until the crust is flaky and browned to your liking.

7. Let the pot pie rest a few minutes before serving. It will be steaming hot and delicious.

8. Enjoy with a glass of wine and a refreshing salad.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Pie Crust No. 3

Today I'm sharing my authentic French Pâte Brisée recipe.  It's wonderfully light and flaky with that unmistakable flavor that only comes from real buttery goodness.

This recipe makes enough for two single-crust (bottom only) pies or one double-crust (top and bottom) pie. Since it's not sweet, it is suitable for sweet or savory pies, especially pot pies for dinner. I used this butter-based crust for my Cabernet Steak Pot Pie recipe and it was fabulous.

3 cups unbleached AP flour
1 cup (2 sticks) cold butter
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup cold water (you may not need all of this)
additional flour for rolling

1. Chop or shred the cold butter. I used a microplane grater to grate the cold butter into a large mixing bowl.  Put it back in the fridge a few minutes to keep it cold. I had commercially salted butter on hand so that is what I used.

2. Add the flour and salt and blend with a pastry blender until evenly crumbly. (If you have unsalted butter, up the salt in this step to 1/2 teaspoon.)  Return mixture to fridge another 10 minutes.

3. Add 1/2 cup cold water to the mixture and begin blending.  If it's too dry, add additional cold water a tablespoon at a time.  Mix until it mostly holds together but it should still be a bit crumbly. Divide dough into two balls. Put the second dough ball back in the fridge.  Keeping this dough cold helps keep the crust flaky and light.

4. Dust your work surface with a little extra flour.  Place one ball of dough in the center. Dust top with flour and roll out to about 1/4" or 3/8" thickness.  It should be enough for a 9" pie dish.

5. Transfer this to your pie dish and repeat step 4 for your top layer.

6. Fill the pie dish and place the top layer on top. Crimp the edges together. I trimmed it slightly past the edge of the dish, then pinched and turned it up and over toward the center and made a little pleat.

7. Bake until done in a preheated oven. This will depend on the pie filling, but generally 350F for 30-45 minutes works well. You may want to use an egg wash to get the top extra brown and glossy.

For additional pie construction details, check out these recipes, too.