Last winter our slow-cooked potted goat pie was voted Most Wholesome Food at Tasmania's iconic Dark Mofo Winter Feast. Our Winter Feast offer also included Annie's elderberry and elderflower mulled wines and her home-grown, poached-in-elderflower Apple and Blackberry Country Crumbles.
Here are a few of Anne's tips on how to create your own warming winter pie at home.
1. First get your meat! We suggest goat but equally, you can use beef or lamb or even replace the meat with beans or chickpeas and make a vegetarian version. Cuts like shanks always work well in a slow cooker as they are more flavoursome. Cut the meat into 1" cubes and marinate in Ashbolt Elderberry and Tarragon Marinade while you prep your vegetables. Reserve marinade liquid.
2. Assemble your veggies - celery, onions, carrots, sweet potatoes, chillies, garlic and assorted herbs - thyme, parsley, bay and rosemary, black pepper, star anise, coriander seeds, fresh chopped ginger. And fresh curry powder. Cut veggies into 1 inch cubes and chop up herbs.
I also use our bottled tomatoes, quite a lot in fact, but you can use a can or two of the tinned variety.
3. Heat a good quality olive oil in the fry pan. We use our Ashbolt Red Label!
Sear meat then the vegetables (transferring to the crock pot as you go). Remember to only sear small quantities at time, till just brown on the outside. The oil and the searing add plenty of flavour to the stew.
When all meat and veg are done, add more extra virgin to the pan, add the curry powder / spices, some chick peas and the chopped herbs and a bay leaf. Cook on high for a few more minutes.
4. Add spice and herb mix to crock pot. Deglaze the pan on high with a cup of red wine. Make sure you get all the lovely flavours off the bottom of the pan and add to crockpot. Season with salt and pepper.
5. Add a good glug of Ashbolt Elderberry Syrup, the reserved marinade and red wine to cover.
5. Cook for between 6 to 8 hours in crock pot or slow oven until meat is tender.
6. Cut puff pastry lid to desired shape and size, cook on paper lined tray in a pre-heated hot oven. Serve with pastry or a bed of mashed root veg and your choice of greens.
Please note, I am never one for measurements or exact ingredients, I prefer to follow what i have in the paddock, pantry or in the veggie garden which provides most of our veggies for our stall at Winter Feast. And perhaps that is why our customers come back year after year .....
"It's like your grandmother's best stew on a cold winter's night" ... (happy Winter Feast customer).