Today’s dish came out of a gift.
I have always liked beef kidneys and my good butcher brought me some as a present. Apparently no one in Greece today eats beef kidneys, so the wholesale meat merchants give them away to the butchers who ask for them.
After returning home I got down to the important task of deciding what to cook with them.
I had some chuck steak and decided to make a kidney and steak pie, emphasizing the kidney and using the steak as second fiddle.
For the first time, I decided to use olives , capers and balsamico vinegar in the filling. I also decided to marinate the kidneys in red wine, and grill the steak rather than fry it. It is in this respect that this is a mediterranean version of the recipe.
I marinated the kidneys for 24 hours in red wine, onions, rosemary salt, crushed red chilli peppers, capers and a bit of garlic.
After the kidneys were marinated, I seared them in a hot pan and chopped them.
I grilled the chuck stek steak and chopped it.
I then put the marinade in a pot, added chopped carrots, more rosemary, a bit of chopped parsley and coriander, and brought it to a robust boil that reduced the liquid to a thick paste.
I then chopped some green olives and added them to the paste, along with balsamico vinegar, and the chopped kidneys and steak. The pie filling was now ready.
While all of this was happening, the dough for the pie’s pastry was resting.
I use butter for the pastry, and just a pinch of baking powder. I do not use puff pastry first of all because it is too heavy and secondly because it takes too much time to make. The butter based pastry that I prepared took no more than 15 minutes. After it was prepared, I let it rest in the fridge for one hour or so.
After covering the pie, I bake it for 45 minutes in 200 centigrade.
I let it rest for 15 minutes and then serve it with a nice green salad and brown home made bread.
The taste was rich, spicy and the meats juicy and full of flavor. The capers, the olives and the balsamico gave the filling the acidity that is necessary to counterbalance the richness of the kidneys’ flavor.
Enjoy the dish with a robust red, preferably the one you used in the marinade.