I love how totally different those two things are. A lekker steak braai “paai” and a delicate butternut au gratin.
We’re not usually about so much pomp and ceremony, so would it help to know that “au gratin’ is just the fancy name for something that has been browned on the top? So it’s just a braai pie and butternut bake – much less pretentious now right?
Anyway, we’ve been living in our new old house for almost three years now and despite all the intentions that we have to have people over, we don’t do it nearly as often as we want to. So when friends of ours moved in around the corner from us I started the plans to have them over.
That was more than a year ago.
As it turns out good intentions don’t actually get people over, by like some friendly osmosis or something. Instead you actually have to ask them to come, like with your voice or fingers tapping away at a screen. So weird. But guys we did it! We all arrived at the same house at the same time and had a pretty lovely time.
But this post isn’t really about the chats we had is it? No, no, it’s about the food! So let’s get down to it.
Here’s what we ate and how we did it:
STEAK AND MUSHROOM BRAAI PIE
- 500g steak. (We used a 900g fillet steak because I wanted a really full pie)
- 2 punnets of button or brown mushrooms
- 1 jar of onion marmalade
- 2 rolls of puff pastry (Woolworths makes the best – I’ve tried them all so you don’t have to 😉 )
- 1 heaped teaspoon crushed garlic
- Thyme (fresh and de-stemmed or dried)
- Nob of butter
Pre-braai your steak. Coat it in seasoning and cook it on the braai for roughly 10 minutes. You want the outside to be seared but the inside quite rare. Take it off and wrap it in tinfoil to rest. While it’s resting, chop up your mushrooms and fry in a pan along with the butter, garlic and thyme. Make sure you have cooked all the excess moisture out of them.
Then you take a grid and lay out the first layer of puff pastry. In top of this you smother it with a layer of onion marmalade with about 2cm open around the sides, then layer your thinly sliced steak and add the fried mushrooms on the top. Cover with the second layer of puff pastry and seal the edges. Brush with melted butter on both sides and then cook over high heat – turning every 3 minutes for roughly 15-20 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.
We used our Weber® Q3200 Gas Grill braai for all of these recipes.
And then there’s the fancy pants buttnernut au gratin
BUTTERNUT AU GRATIN
- 1 butternut (or bag of butternut)
- 1 red or brown onion (sliced)
- 1 cup hard cheese/parmesan
- 2 cups cream
- 1 teaspoon crush garlic
- 1 handful French chives (finely chopped)
- pinch of salt
- pepper to taste
Slice up your butternut and onion thinly and layer in an oven proof dish. In a separate bowl mix up half a cup of the parmesan, cream, garlic and chives then pour it over the butternut. Sprinkle the remaining parmesan over the top and put it into the Weber on 200 degrees. Let it cook for 40 minutes or until the butternut is soft and it’s bubbling at the top.