2 pounds beef loin choice sirloin tips, or other sirloin cut
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 ½ cups onion, diced very small
1 ½ cups carrots, peeled and diced very small
8-ounce package white button mushrooms, diced very small
1 tablespoon minced fresh garlic
Few grinds fresh nutmeg
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1 quart beef stock
2 cups water
2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
2 sticks cold butter cut into pieces (1 cup)
1 ½ teaspoons salt
6–8 tablespoons ice cold water
2 puff pastry sheets (one box will yield 6 portions) – we used a Pepperidge Farm 17.3 ounce package
1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
Cut the beef into 2” cubes and place in a medium bowl.
Cover with the flour, salt and pepper and toss to coat. Set aside while you work on prepping the other ingredients.
In a medium to large Dutch oven (4 ½ to 5 quart), heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over medium high heat and once hot, sear one third of the beef, keeping the pieces from touching each other. Sear on each side for 2-3 minutes total, then remove to a dish or bowl. Then repeat two more times with the remaining beef and two more tablespoons of oil.
Once all of the beef has been seared, add the remaining oil along with onion, carrots, mushrooms, garlic and nutmeg and cook for three minutes, stirring as you go.
Clear a spot in the center and add tomato paste and cook for one minute.
Add vinegar and stir, scraping up and brown bits, then add Worcestershire sauce.
Add beef stock, water and reserved seared beef, bring to a boil then lower to a low boil or high simmer for 90 minutes uncovered.
During the final 30 minutes, make sure that the water doesn’t all evaporate. (You don’t want the mixture to stick.) Add a little more water as needed to finish with a thick sauce.
Remove from heat. If making ahead, cool, cover and chill. But reheat before filling ramekins.
Pick out the large pieces of beef with a slotted spoon and add to food processor and pulse 4-5 quick pulses to break the meat up into small shreds. Do not pulse too long, just enough to break up the meat. Add back to the liquid and stir. The filling should be thick.
While the beef is cooking, make the bottom crust by adding flour to a food processor along with the salt and cold butter pieces. Pulse to break up the butter into pea sized pieces.
Add 5 tablespoons of water and pulse to combine and then slowly add more water as needed until the dough starts to come together but is still a little crumbly.
Lay out a large piece of plastic wrap and pour dough contents into center. Then use edges of plastic to push the sides into a ball. Wrap tightly and flatten into a disc and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
If frozen, remove pastry sheets from freezer and lay out to thaw.
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. and place a rack in a sheet pan and place into the oven to heat up along with the oven.
We used 8-ounce ramekins that were 2” deep and 4 ¼” wide. You will need six of these plus one more to use as a guide to cut out the tops. Also have on hand a circle that is 8” across to cut out the bottoms. I used a soup bowl.
Flour your counter and roll out the bottom crust dough 26”x18”. Then use the 8” bowl as a guide and cut out six circles.
Press these into the six ramekins pressing the overlapping dough into the sides. Let the excess flop over the top.
Fill each ramekin up to the brim with warm to hot filling.
Lay out the two pastry sheets and using the seventh ramekin, cut out three tops on each sheet.
Beat the egg with the water and brush over each overhanging edge of each ramekin then top with a puff pastry top and squeeze the two doughs together until they stick. Use a pair of scissors and cut around the edge to remove excess dough. Use a brush and brush off any excess flour.
Brush the tops with the egg wash then using a paring knife, make a vent hole in the top of each.
Open the oven door and place them on the preheated rack and pan and bake for 10 minutes then lower heat to 350 degrees and bake for 15-25 minutes longer, or until tops are puffed and golden brown.
Remove and serve hot, and to be traditional, serve with ketchup on the side.
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