Makes 12 pies
250g plain flour plus extra for dusting
200g butter, chopped into small cubes and well chilled
½ cup full fat sour cream
500g sirloin steak, diced into small chunks
20g dried porcini, soaked in 2 cups of warm tap water to rehydrate for 60 minutes
1 Tablespoon clarified butter
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 Tablespoon brown sugar
1 Tablespoon Vegemite or marmite
4 Tablespoons plain flour
250ml beef stock
¼ cup verjuice
Sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup tasty cheese, grated
1 egg yolk, beaten, for glazing
Prepare the pie filling by heating a large heavy pot on medium heat or induction setting 7.
Add the clarified butter and bring to a sizzle before adding the onions and sautéing for a couple of minutes, stirring frequently.
Add the brown sugar and balsamic vinegar and continue to fry for 3- 4 minutes to caramelise the onions lightly.
Lay the beef on a large plate and dust with the flour. Ensure the beef is well coated in flour.
Turn the heat up slightly, and drop the beef into the pot and brown and fry the meat on all sides.
Drain the mushrooms from the water, retaining the mushrooms to add later.
Now add the beef stock, 1½ cups of liquid from the mushrooms, the verjuice and marmite and season well with salt and pepper.
Bring the contents of the pot to a simmer, place the lid on the pot and reduce the heat to low or induction setting 3 and allow the beef to slowly cook for 2 hours, or until tender and the sauce has thickened.
Add the sliced mushrooms and cook through for a further 5 minutes.
Make the pastry by adding the flour and butter to a food processor. Blend until the flour and butter resembles breadcrumbs.
Add the sour cream gradually while the machine mixes, until a dough is formed. You may not need all the sour cream. This depends on how absorbent the flour is that you are using. Turn the dough out on to a lightly floured bench and form the dough into a rectangle shape. Cover with cling film and rest in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes before using.
Preheat the oven on bake at 200C. Lightly grease 12 small muffin or cupcake tins with butter.
On to a lightly floured bench, roll out the pastry to a 5mm thickness and cut into 24 rounds that are larger than the muffin tin holes.
Line the base of the muffin tins with pastry, pressing the pastry up the edges allowing some of the pastry to over hang from the tin holes.
Taste the meat stew for flavour, adding additional seasoning if required. The stew should be thick and juicy with the liquid having reduced and the flavours concentrated. The meat should be tender and falling apart.
Spoon the meat stew into the lined muffin tins to just above ¾ fill. Top the stew with a generous sprinkling of grated cheese and top with the remaining pastry rounds, ensuring lids are well sealed to the bases.
Brush the pies with the egg yolk and bake for 25-30 minutes, until puffed and golden.
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