To serve 4:
For the Suet Crust you will need:
- 8 oz, 250 g, self-raising flour.
- 4 oz, 110 g, vegetable suet.
- half a tsp of salt.
- several tablespoons of Cold water to mix.
For the Filling you will need:
- 1 lb 4 oz, 550 g, of diced lean stewing steak.
- 12 oz, 350 g, ox kidney, cored and cut into small cubes. The easiest way to remove the core from the kidney is to snip it out with a pair of kitchen scissors. If you don’t feel confident enough to do this yourself, just ask your butcher to prepare it for you.
- 1 large onion.
For the seasoning you will need:
- 1 oz, 25 g, of plain flour.
- half a tsp of salt.
- a good grind of black pepper.
- half a tsp of dried thyme.
For the stock you will need:
- 8 fl.oz, 250 ml, between a quarter and half a pint, of boiling water.
- 1 beef oxo cube.
- a good shake of Worcestershire sauce.
You will need to grease a large, 2 pint, 1.2 litre, deep pudding bowl.
You will also need:
- A circle of double thickness, greased, greaseproof paper.
- Some string or a large elastic band.
To cook your pudding you will need either a large saucepan with a lid, but preferably a graduated steamer with a lid that will stand securely on top of your unlidded saucepan.
To make the suet crust:
- Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl and add the suet and salt.
- Now gradually add several tablespoons of cold water until your mixture comes together to form a soft but pliable dough. If you stir with a flat-bladed knife and mix well between additions, you will notice the mix, gradually forming a ball in your bowl.
- Turn your dough out onto a lightly floured worktop, and knead it slightly so that it forms a ball.
- Put the dough into a clean plastic bag and then into the fridge.
To make the filling:
- Peel and coarsely chop the onion.
- Put the diced steak and kidney into a large bowl.
- Mix the ingredients for the seasoning together in a small bowl and add them to the meat, turning it over until everything is well coated.
- Now add the onion to the seasoned meat and mix together well.
To make the stock. Crumble the oxo cube into a small jug, add the boiling water and stir well.
To make the pudding:
- Take your suet pastry from the fridge.
- Break off a quarter of it and roll it out on your lightly floured worktop until it is the same size as the top of your bowl. You can check this by placing the bowl on top of the circle. Leave it on one side.
- Roll out the remainder until its about 3-quarters of an inch or 2 cm, larger than the top of the bowl. You can check this by laying the bowl, upside down on the pastry. Now, lift the pastry into the bowl and it should completely line it.
- Add the meat and onion filling and carefully pour in the stock. The gravy only needs to come about 2-thirds of the way up the inside of the bowl, if you insert your finger into the filling you will be able to monitor the amount as you add it.
- Dampen the pastry rim with a little cold water by dipping your fingers in and running them around the pastry edge.
- Now lay your other pastry circle over the top of the filling, fold in any excess pastry from around the edge and press the edges together well to seal the top.
- Holding your double thickness of greasproof paper greased side down, make a small pleat in the centre between finger and thumb and lay it over the top of the pastry. The crease in the paper will allow the pudding to rise during cooking.
- Cover with a layer of kitchen foil, then secure it all the way around the edge of the bowl just below the rim with the string or elastic band.
- Stand the bowl inside the large saucepan with enough warm water to come half way up the outside of the bowl and cover the pan with a lid. Alternatively, fill your saucepan three-quarters full with warm water, stand your pudding bowl in the steamer, then put this on top of the saucepan. Cover the steamer with a lid. Bring the pan to the boil, turn down the heat to simmer or until you can just hear the pudding hissing. If you lift the lid of the pan or steamer, a little steam should be rising up to meet your hand.
- Cook gently for 1 and a half hours. Add more hot water to the saucepan from a small jug if necessary.
- When the pudding is cooked, allow it to cool slightly before carefully removing the bowl from the steamer or pan onto a clear, heat resistant worktop. Remove the covering from the top of the pudding, and turn the bowl upside down onto a large serving plate, the bowl should lift off fairly easily.
Divide the pudding with a sharp knife and serve with A little mashed potato, sliced carrots, green beans and peas.
If you don’t like kidney, just replace it with extra steak.