1kg/2lb 4oz beef shin or feather blade, cut into very large chunks
2-4 tbsp sunflower oil
200g/7oz bacon lardons
200g/7oz shallots, peeled
2 celery sticks, chopped
3 tbsp plain flour
2 beef stock cubes
3 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
3 each thyme sprigs and bay leaves
300g/11oz baby carrots or baby Chantenay carrots
FOR THE MASH
1.5kg/3lb 5oz potatoes, peeled and cut into large chunks
85g/3oz mature cheddar, grated
100ml/3½fl oz milk
2 tsp English mustard powder
Brown beef in the oil, in batches, in a large casserole or pan. Tip in the lardons, shallots and celery, and fry for 10 mins until softened and golden. Stir in the flour until absorbed, crumble in the stock cubes, then gradually stir in 1 litre water and the Worcestershire sauce. Add herbs, return the beef and any juices, cover and simmer for 1 hr. Add carrots, cover and simmer for 1 hr more until really tender.
Boil the potatoes in salted water until tender. Drain well, return to pan over a gentle heat and allow to steam-dry for 2 mins. Mash with the butter, cheese, milk, mustard powder and seasoning.
Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Strain beef and veg into a large colander over a deep pan. Set sauce over a high heat for 5 mins to reduce. Shred beef into chunky pieces and transfer to a baking dish with veg and bacon, and some thickened sauce. Pipe or spoon on mash. Bake for 30 mins until mash is golden and crisp. The pie can be assembled and chilled for up to 2 days, or frozen for up to 3 months. If frozen, defrost thoroughly, then bake as above, but for 50 mins-1 hr.
884 kcals, protein 49g, carbs 54g, fat 53g, sat fat 21g, fibre 5g, sugar 7g, salt 2.3g