Why not try a scone topping for a pie instead of the usual pastry for a change? This is a wholesome and nourishing meal is perfect for a cold Winter’s day and is a complete meal in itself or you can cook some extra green vegetables to accompany it. The cheese scone topping is delicious and very easy to make making a firm and filling topping similar to dumplings in a stew. This slow cooking dish is well worth the wait and will leave the beef falling off the bone – succulent and tender and full of flavour.
- 4 tbsp vegetable oil
- 3 tbsp plain flour
- Pinch salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 900g stewing or casserole beef, cut into bite sized pieces
- 2 onions, sliced
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 2 large carrots, sliced
- 750ml hot beef stock
- 2 tbsp tomato purée
- 2 tsp Worcester sauce
- 100g peas
- For the scone topping:
- 225g self raising flour
- Pinch salt
- 50g butter or margarine
- 125g mature Cheddar cheese, grated
- Milk to mix
- A little milk to glaze
Preheat oven to 150⁰C/300⁰F/Fan 130⁰C/Gas Mark 2. Heat half the oil in a large frying or sauté pan. Season the flour with salt and pepper and toss the meat in the flour until lightly coated.
Fry the meat in several batches in the hot oil until well browned. Lift out each batch and put into a large ovenproof dish.
Add the remaining oil to the frying or sauté pan and add the onion, garlic and carrots. Fry until lightly browned.
Pour in the stock, tomato purée and Worcester sauce and stir well.
Bring to the boil then add to the meat in the ovenproof dish. Stir everything together well. Cover and cook for 2 hours 30 minutes.
To make the scone topping, sift the flour and salt into a bowl. Rub in the butter or margarine until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.
Stir in the cheese and sufficient milk to make a light dough.
Roll out the dough to 1 cm thick on a lightly floured worktop. Cut the dough into 8 rounds.
About half an hour before the end of the cooking time increase the oven temperature to 200⁰C/400⁰F/Fan 180⁰C/Gas Mark 6. Stir the peas into the dish.
Arrange the scones on top of the meat and brush with a little milk to glaze. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes until the scones are golden brown.
Top tip for making Scone topped beef pie
Substitute half the stock for red wine and add 200g sliced or button mushrooms to this recipe to make it extra special. Chopped herbs can be substituted for the cheese in the scone topping.