Meat and Potato Pie (Bankers’ Bounty)

This recipe should be used according to financial circumstances. The amount of meat remains constant and the cut of meat is cheaper but the volume of potato increases according to the number being served and the availability of cash.

It sounds very unlikely but is very good, and you may class the dish up by using wine to deepen flavor of the stock. Add a bay leaf or some gentle herbs if you wish. But in my opinion its best served in the classic form with good homemade onion gravy. Another favorite accompaniment is a ‘steak sauce’. Serve with Savoy Cabbage and mashed and sieved parsnips combined with nutmeg, butter and cream. This will serve 6 to 8 or so depending upon appetites.

A large saucepan


1 lb ground beef ensure this is not wholly fat free.

2lbs of potatoes, peeled and cut into eighths or more depending upon the size of the potatoes. Purists may leave skins on.

1 to 2 desert spoons of flour (plain)

Three large onions sliced and diced roughly.

Knob of lard or butter or some oil.

Stock made from beef bones or good quality stock cube.  You will need one to two pints of decent stock.

Red wine vinegar

Salt, white pepper and black pepper and nutmeg to taste.

Gravy brown or Worcester Sauce or Mushroom Ketchup.

Put lard, butter or oil in pan Fry the onions until soft and add the ground beef and fry until the meat is browned thoroughly.

Add the potatoes and cook until the potatoes begin to heat through, a few minutes or so on high heat, moving the contents continuously around the pan.

Add the flour and cook for another few minutes until the flour sticks to pan base then add 5 fl ounces of red wine vinegar and this will loosen anything that is sticking to the saucepan base. Then add the stock. Bring to the boil. Simmer the filling gently for at least an hour, longer the better. The filling needs to have a thick consistency, like a white sauce or one of those tins of fruit pie filling. You can add more stock to achieve this if it’s too thick; and simmer it for longer if it’s too thin. You see different potatoes will release different amounts of starch. You do not need to be precious about this recipe. Turn off the heat. Add a teaspoon of white pepper and half a teaspoon of course black pepper, more if you feel its required. This adds a bite to the filling. If you are of the church of chilies try dry mustard rather than chili pepper.  It’s a better heat taste for this pie. Add salt to taste. Grate some fresh nutmeg into the filling and add a dash of browning or Worcester sauce to give the filling a colour, as desired.

Place mixture in a bowl, cover and allow to stand overnight in the refrigerator. This filling may be made several days in advance. It will improve if left for two nights or more. It will keep in a refrigerator for a week without a problem in it is placed in an airtight container. If you want to improve the depth of the filling add red wine just before you use the filling and stir it into the mixture. A glass will suffice.

Short Pastry.

You may buy this in a supermarket. Use your favorite recipe. I recommend the fat be half butter and half lard but you can really approach this in the manner that makes you most comfortable and accords with dietary requirements.

Place the filling in the base of a pie dish or better the base of a Pyrex casserole dish. Roll out the pastry, again a thicker pastry would be more authentic but you can decide upon this for yourself.  Cover the filling with short pastry and glaze with an egg. Use a fork to pierce the pastry.  Decorate with the crust with flat circles of your pastry cut into various sizes, like coins and bake in a medium oven for thirty to forty minutes until the crust is golden. If it’s ready before you are just let it rest in a warm oven it will not spoil.

Serve with cabbage and mashed and creamed parsnips as above and onion gravy.


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