Tag Archives: meat

My, oh my! What a pot pie!

Mrs. Poolman and I share separate, but similar bad childhood memories of pot pies. Both our mothers cooked (if you can call it that) and served the pre-made Banquet or Swanson pies. My recollection is of an aluminum foil mini-pie pan with only a top-crust and filled with nasty, oozing, yellow gravy, a few peas and carrots and maybe a little meat. The pot pies made those old-style TV dinners look like gourmet feasts. That experience left me with a deep seated aversion to pot pies – until recently.

In an effort to convert me, last winter, Mrs. P made a very good chicken pot pie. She constructed and baked it in a casserole-size baking dish. The filling was full of meat and the whole thing tasted great.

On Wednesday, it was my turn to make dinner, using some left-over grilled steak from earlier in the week. Usually, we will put the steak on a salad or make quesadillas or fajitas. I thought I would try something new.

How about a steak pie?

This was brand, new culinary territory for me. So you can imagine my excitement when it turned out really good. Here is what I did.

Steak Pie

What I used.

  • App. 1 lb (0r more) of cooked steak, sliced into small pieces.
  • One package of pre-made pie dough (2 pieces, top and bottom)
  • One onion – chopped
  • ½ stick butter or margarine
  • One “scoop” of flour
  • 2 cups of beef broth (bouillon crystals or cubes dissolved in hot water)
  • ½ cup of milk (because that was all that was in the carton) The milk is optional.
  • One small can of mushroom stems and pieces
  • App. one cup of leftover green beans (because I had them.)

 The Crust

In a small, ungreased casserole (8×8” or 7×9”) dish, spread one of the pie dough pieces, lining the bottom and sides. The pie dough is probably fitted for a round pie pan, so you’ll have to cut and patch to make it fit. Save the second piece for the top.

The Filling

In a large sauce pan, saute the chopped onion in the butter until the onion is soft.

Add the “scoop” (approximately two tablespoons) of flour to the onion-butter mixture. Mix well and allow it to cook for about a minute or two.

Add the beef broth/bouillon and milk and stir until it is a smooth gravy. Add the bouillon a little at a time, and adjust the amount according to the thickness of the gravy. You want it fairly thick.

The filling -- before adding the meat.

Add the meat and vegetables and mix well.

This is how much meat I had to work with.

Pour the mixture into the dough-lined casserole dish.

Before the top crust was added.

Spread the second dough piece over the top, once again, cutting and patching to completely cover the pie. Try to get the bottom and top pieces to meet and use a fork to crimp them together along the edge of the dish.

Ready for the oven.

Use a knife to put a couple of cross-shaped slits in the top crust to allow steam to escape during the baking. You may have to check on those “vents” during the baking. As the crust bakes, the holes may close up.

Bake at 375 degrees for approximately 45 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.

...and ready to eat.

Note: I used green beans last night, because that is what I had in the refrigerator. You can add whatever vegetables you like, or skip the veggies all together.

Bon appetite!

Low standards

Mrs. Poolman and I had a conversation yesterday that gave me something to think about.

It started when she called me at work in the late afternoon. She said that the staff in her intensive care unit was planning a group lunch today. Her assignment was to bring a couple pounds of meat for tacos. She asked if I would pick up some ground beef on the way home.

An aside here – Mrs. Poolman is an RN who works 12 hour shifts in an intensive care unit. When she works one of her three shifts a week, she is out of the house at 6:20 am and doesn’t return until after 7:30 pm. When she works back-to-back shifts, like yesterday and today, she isn’t interested in running errands on the way home. Understandable.

TacoMeat1lgSo, of course, I said I would do so and offered to cook the meat also. No big deal. I get home between 5:30 and 6 pm and have time in the evening to take care of that.  Besides, what’s the big deal about browning some ground beef?

I stopped at Publix and picked up two pounds of ground chuck and taco spice packets. I cooked it up when I got home and left it for Mrs. Poolman to pack as she wanted for the next day.

When Mrs. Poolman arrived home close to 8 pm, she told me the other nurses were astounded when she mentioned that no only would I stop at the grocery store, but I would also cook the meat for her. One nurse asked if she could have first dibs on me if Mrs. Poolman should happen to die anytime soon. Huh?

All this made me wonder about these nurses’ husbands. Do they not do things like that for their wives? Apparently not.

Have the standards for “good husband” sunk so low that cooking a pan of ground chuck constitutes grounds for canonization? That’s kind of sad. On the other hand, it makes me look good by comparison. It doesn’t hurt to have Mrs. Poolman’s co-workers telling her what a sterling example of a husband I am.

Rock on, brothers!