Annabel Cooks: Beef, Beer and Bacon Pie for Father’s Day!

Annabel Bower – Adelaide
??‍?Recipe Development #annabelsrecipes
?Food Stylist + Photographer
?Content Creator – Foodies
?Writer @miles__apart
?Ballymaloe Cookery School Grad @foodbyannabel

What more could your Dad, Step-Dad, Grandpa or favourite Uncle want for lunch on Father’s Day? This do-ahead pie has it all! The cooking process evaporates the alcohol in the beer so it’s safe for children to eat. Most casseroles tell you to brown the meat first but this is a chuck-it-all-in-and-cross-your-fingers kind of recipe, who’s got time for browning meat anyway? Enjoy!

Serves 6-8


1 teaspoon olive oil
2 brown onions, diced
4 cloves crushed garlic
250g streaky bacon, diced
2kg chuck steak, diced
2 carrots, diced (optional)
1 cup tomato passata or crushed tinned tomatoes
375mls Coopers Pale Ale or your beer of choice
1 cup chicken or beef stock, salt reduced
Bay leaves and sprigs of fresh thyme

Mashed potato topping
800g white potatoes
40g butter, cubed
1/2 cup warm milk
50g grated parmesan cheese, extra to sprinkle

Kale Chips
1 bunch of kale, stalks removed, chopped into 5cm wedges
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper


Preheat oven to 150 degrees celsius.
In a large ovenproof casserole pot, brown diced bacon in olive oil until crispy, remove from pot using a slotted spoon and put aside. Next, brown off onions in left over bacon fat with a pinch of salt until soft and translucent. Add crushed garlic for the last minute.

Return bacon to pot along with beef, tomato passata, beer, stock, bay leaves and thyme. If using, the carrot can also be added at this stage. Season with black pepper, don’t add any more salt until the end, it may not need any after the sauce is reduced.

Stir all ingredients together and wrap pot tightly with foil, or cover with a well fitted lid. Bake in the oven for 2.5-3 hours or until meat is tender and almost falling apart. Remove meat from pot using a slotted spoon and put aside, reduce sauce that is left until it is thick enough to cover the back of a spoon. Check seasoning then return meat to pot and stir to combine.

Meanwhile, for the mash, peel potatoes, cut into 1/4’s and place in a saucepan of cold salted water. Bring to the boil and cook until soft in the middle. Drain well, return to pot and mash with butter. Next add warm milk and grated parmesan, stir to combine, but do not over mix. Check seasoning and add salt and pepper if needed.

Increase oven temperature to 200 degrees celsius. Place generous scoops of mash on top of beef mix in pot, sprinkle top with extra parmesan and bake for 10-15 minutes or until golden.

As you place the assembled pie in the oven also pop in kale leaves, tossed in olive oil, sprinkled with salt and pepper and placed in a single layer on a lined baking tray. These will also take 10-15 minutes.

This pie can be made in advance and reheated as needed. After topping beef mix with mash, place in fridge and then follow recipe as per instructions. It will take about 45 minutes if the pie has been in the fridge. The kale chips are best cooked just before serving.

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