Steak and Kidney Pie with Black Garlic and Thyme

Written by Karen Coakley

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I am a lover of classics recipes and comfort food. I love my health kick as much as the next person but I am a sucker for blow outs and good old fashioned comfort foods especially at this time of year when it’s all about the #HYGGE for us in the form of walks in the woods foraging for the last of the seasons mushrooms, mountain treks that go on for hours where the only sounds we hear are the birds singing and the deer calling as rutting season ends, long evenings absorbing the cosines of the fire and the absolute pleasure of a warm comforting dinner cooking slowly in the oven.

One of my absolute favourites is Steak and Kidney Pie, the kind your mother used to make when you were a child. I love it when you slice through the pastry and release the deep salty juices. I adore the flavour that the fermented black garlic gives this recipe and the taste of the kidney coming through brings me right back to my mothers kitchen table.  I have a great relationship with my local butcher and she usually cuts me a few kidneys from the sheep hanging ready to be butchered and slips them in as a bonus with the rest of my purchases as nobody really buys them or uses them anymore which is a pity as for me they are the essential ingredient in this dish adding that familiar flavour of my childhood to the gravy.  Add in a few sprigs of fresh thyme and this dish sings. It’s a very simple recipe as you can see with very few ingredients.

I nearly always have ready made puff pastry on standby in the fridge as pies like this are so easy to throw together, you can of course make your own Shortcrust pastry which I find I prefer with the beefiness of this pie.

Honestly on days like today, in the depths of winter in weather what could be more comforting than a great big bowl of this served with some steaming creamy mashed potatoes.

It’s how you get you ‘Hygge’ on 🙂




  1. Preheat the oven to 180 c
  2. Heat the oil in a flameproof pot, add the chopped onions  carrots and celery and sweat for a few minutes until golden. Add the Black Garlic and allow to cook for a minute or two. Remove with a slotted spoon and place on a plate.
  3. Put the flour into a freezer bag, season with salt and pepper, add the beef and kidneys and toss to coat evenly.
  4. Add the meat to pot and brown all over, add the vegetable back into the pot when the meat is nicely seared on all sides.
  5. Add the stock, the thyme leaves, bring to the boil and skim off any scum that rises to the top.
  6. Put a lid on your flameproof casserole and pop into the oven and cook for 1.5 hrs
  7. After the 1.5 hours remove from the oven, place in individual pie dishes, top with the puff pastry, wash with beaten egg and return to the oven for 25 mins until pastry has puffed up and is golden.
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