Every gas station I went to in New Zealand carried a wide range of warm hand pies ready to be picked up and eaten on the go, no utensils required. You’ll find them in hot cases near the checkout counters. Flavors are a-plenty, ranging from bacon and egg to steak and cheese, butter chicken, chicken and mushroom, smoked fish, and my all-time favorite—mince and cheese (beef and cheese).
Note: You can save the puff pastry scraps and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar or Parmesan cheese & fresh thyme to make a tasty snack.
Watch This Recipe
New Zealand-Style Beef & Cheddar Pies
small onion, finely diced
clove garlic, minced
lean ground beef
1 1/2 cups
450-gram packages pre-rolled butter puff-pastry, thawed in the fridge
(100g) aged white cheddar cheese, finely diced
Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add onion, cook, stirring often until tender and starting to brown on the edges, about 2-3 minutes. Add garlic, cook 1 minute. Add ground beef to pan and cook, breaking up with a wooden spoon, until no pink remains, about 5-6 minutes.
Stir in salt and a few cracks of black pepper. Sprinkle flour over beef and cook, 1 minute. Pour in beef stock and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to a boil, scraping all the brown bits off the bottom of the pan. Reduce heat to medium-low and let simmer until gravy has reduced and thickened, about 6-8 minutes.
Scrape beef mixture into a bowl and let cool to room temperature. Cover and refrigerate until completely chilled, this will take at least 1-2 hours. The filling can easily be made the day before.
Remove puff pastry from fridge. Roll sheets to 1/8-inch thick. Cut puff pastry into twelve 4-inch rounds and twelve 3-inch rounds. Pre-mark where you will cut each round as you will have just enough dough for all the rounds. Place onto a parchment-lined baking sheet and let chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Lightly grease a 12-cup muffin tin. Place larger puff pastry rounds in the base of each muffin tin, pressing along the sides so they are flush with the bottom and sides of the tin. The dough should slightly overlap the rims, stretch dough slightly if needed.
Remove the chilled beef mixture from the fridge. Stir in the diced cheese. Evenly divide filling between each pie, packing them right to the top.
Whisk the egg in a bowl. Brush the edges of the pastry overlap with the egg mixture and top with smaller pastry rounds. Press around the edges of the pies using the tines of a fork to create a seal. Cut a small slit into the top of each pie. Use the remaining egg to brush the tops of each pie. Place the tray in the freezer to chill for 15 mins before baking.
While the pies are chilling preheat the oven to 425° F. Bake pies for 20-25 minutes, until golden brown. Let cool 10 minutes before serving.