- 1 cup Manuka wood chips
- 1Kg Greenlea beef cheeks
- Cracked black pepper
- 2L beef stock
- 2 Tbsp fresh thyme (chopped)
- 5 cloves garlic (thinly sliced)
- 1 stick celery (small dice)
- 1 carrot (diced)
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 large white onions (diced)
- 1 Tbsp brown sugar
- 130gm flour
- 100gm butter
- 1 Tbsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1 Tbsp sherry vinegar
- 1 kg pre rolled flaky puff pastry (enough for 6 small pies)
- 3 egg yolks (beaten)
Trim any excess sinew from outside of beef cheeks (don’t be too fussy as it will break down during cooking) season heavily with salt and black pepper. Smoke cheeks in a smoker or BBQ at 130⁰C for 1 hour, then remove from smoker and place in boiling stock. Cover and simmer gently until tender, this will take around 2½ hours. Stock may need topped up if it reduces too much.
In a large saucepan, melt the butter and add onions, carrot, celery, bay leaves and thyme, cook over a medium heat stirring regularly for 10 minutes to allow flavours to develop.
Chop the cheek meat into 2-3cm chunks and add to the vegetable mix, sprinkle over the flour and stir.
Add 700ml of the hot braising liquid, bring to the boil and simmer gently for 20 minutes, being careful that the mixture doesn’t stick to the bottom.
Add the vinegar, brown sugar and Worcestershire sauce, season with salt and black pepper to taste.
Allow mixture to cool.
Preheat oven to fan bake at 190⁰C
Cut pastry into 6 x 16 cm diameter disks and 6 x 9cm disks.
Spray a large muffin tray with canola oil spray then line the tray with the larger pastry disks being careful not to stretch the pastry. Fill each pie with filling so it is comes just over the top of the tray.
Place one of the smaller pastry disks on each pie, pinch and fold the edges of the pastry all the way round each pie. Cut a small hole in the top of each one and brush with beaten egg yolk.
Place tray in oven for around 25-30 minutes, until golden brown, the time may vary depending on your oven, serve with buttery potato mash.