This makes a little more beef mixture than you will need, but it freezes like a dream and eats like a dream tossed through fresh pasta.
1 tbsp olive oil
3 shallots, sliced
4 cloves garlic, crushed
1.2kg beef short ribs (about 3-4)
2 tbsp white miso paste
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 ½ cups beef stock
375ml ale (dark ale works well)
445g shortcrust pastry sheet, defrosted in the fridge (we used Careme)
375g puff pastry sheet, defrosted in the fridge (we used Careme)
1 egg and 1 tbsp milk, whisked together
1. Preheat the oven to 160C.
2. Place a flameproof casserole dish over medium heat. Add the oil, shallots and garlic and cook until the shallots are translucent and fragrant. Add the short ribs and brown the meat on all sides. Add the miso, brown sugar, stock and ale – the ribs should be completely covered with liquid. Cover with a tight-fitting lid and cook in the oven for three hours or until the meat starts to fall from the bone.
3. Gently remove the short ribs and set the meat aside, discarding the bones. Strain the braising liquid through a fine sieve into a saucepan. Place over medium heat and reduce by about half, until it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon (between 10 and 20 minutes).
4. Roll the shortcrust pastry out to 2mm-thick and cut out four 16cm rounds. Lightly grease four 9.5cm-round pie dishes and line with the pastry circles, pushing up the sides all the way to the top. Line with baking paper, fill with pastry weights or uncooked rice, and blind bake for 10 minutes or until lightly golden. Remove the pastry weights and paper, and return the shells to the oven for a further two minutes, for the base to lightly cook. Allow to cool.
5. Gently shred the beef from the short ribs and fill the pie shells. Spoon one to two tablespoons of the reduced braising liquid over each shell – the meat should be generously coated, but you don't want so much liquid that the pastry becomes soggy.
6. Cut four rounds of puff pastry to fit the top of your pie dishes. Gently press down the sides. Make a small slash in the centre of the pie top to allow steam to escape then brush generously with egg wash.
7. Increase oven to 180C. Place the pies on a baking tray and cook for 20 to 25 minutes or until the tops of the pie are puffed and golden.