Go ahead and grab your stretchiest pants and your fluffiest blanket, the Ultimate Comfort Dinner is about to serve up the kind of meal you’ll want to follow up with the best nap of your life! Get ready for all those fresh, tender, steaming-hot veggies, the chunky, rosy beef, and the crispy, salty bacon swimming in dark, rich, and savory juices… is your mouth watering yet? It all rests under a buttery, crispy puff pastry cover to create the most satisfying blend of textures. See? You’re going to be so full after indulging in the Ultimate Comfort Dinner, you’ll need to plan time to enjoy a post-dinner nap! What a wonderful life we live!

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Ingredients

  • 0.7 ounces dried porcini mushrooms, sliced, whole, or chopped
  • 1 1/4 cups water, boiling
  • 2 pounds chuck beef, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • 1-2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 onion, finely chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped, plus 3 carrots, halved lengthwise and cut into 3 1/2-inch chunks, divided
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 10 ounces dark ale
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 3 sprigs thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme leaves
  • 2 bay leaves, fresh or dried
  • 7 ounces bacon, diced
  • 10-13 ounces Swiss brown mushrooms
  • 1-2 sheets puff pastry, enough to cover a pie
  • 1 egg yolk

Directions

Step 1 –In a bowl, add the porcini mushrooms and the water and let the mushrooms soak for at least 30 minutes and up to 1 hour.

Step 2 –Strain the porcini mushrooms and reserve the soaking liquid.

Step 3 –Roughly chop the soaked porcini mushrooms.

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Step 4 –Sprinkle the beef with the salt and the pepper.

Step 5 –In a large, heavy-based pot, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil.

Step 6 –Add 1/2 of the seasoned beef to the pot and cook until it is no longer pink, about 5-7 minutes. Transfer the cooked beef from the pot, then repeat with the remaining beef.

Step 7 –Lower the heat to medium-low, adding the remaining oil if the pot is looking dry.

Step 8 –Add the onion and the garlic to the pot and cook until they are fragrant, about 2 minutes.

Step 9 –Add the celery and the 1 finely chopped carrot to the pot and cook until they have softened and are sweet to taste, about 6 minutes.

Step 10 –Add the remaining carrot chunks to the veggie mixture and cook for 2 minutes.

Step 11 –Add the flour to the veggie mixture and stir thoroughly.

Step 12 –Add the ale and the beef stock to the soup mixture and stir until the flour has dissolved.

Step 13 –Add the thyme, the bay leaves, the soaked porcini mushrooms, the reserved porcini mushroom soaking liquid (ensuring the gritty bits settled at the bottom aren’t added), and the cooked beef to the soup mixture.

Step 14 –Turn up the heat slightly, mix the soup, and bring it to a simmer, then cover.

Step 15 –Adjust the heat so the soup is gently simmering and then cook until the beef is tender and has reached an internal temperature of at least 145 degrees F, about 1 hour 45 minutes.

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Step 16 –While the soup is cooking, in a skillet over high heat, cook the bacon until golden. Transfer the bacon to a paper-towel-lined plate, leaving the drippings in the skillet.

Step 17 –Add the Swiss mushrooms to the bacon drippings and cook until they are golden all over, about 5 minutes.

Step 18 –Add the cooked bacon to the Swiss mushrooms and toss to coat the mushrooms.

Step 19 –Stir the bacon mixture into the stew mixture.

Step 20 –Simmer the stew, uncovered, until the Swiss mushrooms are tender, about 15 minutes.

Step 21 –Transfer the stew from the heat and let it cool.

Step 22 –Preheat the oven to 390 degrees F.

Step 23 –Pour the cooled stew into a 10x8x1.8-inch pie dish.

Step 24 –Top the stew mixture with the puff pastries and brush with the egg yolk.

Step 25 –Cut a few slits in the surface of the puff pastries.

Step 26 –Bake until the puff pastries are a deep golden color and the filling is piping hot in the middle, about 30-35 minutes.

Step 27 –Allow the bake to rest for 5 minutes.

Step 28 –Serve.