Steak and Kidney Pie

This meat sundry recipe seems somehow so very British retro or colonial America. It does feature our vintage favorite bacon fat though!

Steak and Kidney Pie

½ lb beef kidney
2 tablespoons vinegar
¼ cup bacon fat
10 small white onions, ¼ lb.
1½ lbs ground steak or chuck
1 lb. diced pared potatoes
Pastry for single crust

Split kidneys and remove cores, tubes and membranous covering. (that whole thing, makes me glad I don’t cook meat) Soak 30 minutes in 1 quart cold water to which the vinegar has been added, then drain, dice and brown in 2 tablespoons of the fat. Barely cover with water, add 1 teaspoon salt and simmer slowly until tender, about 45 minutes. Add water from time to time as needed to keep meat covered with liquid. Cut onions in halves or quarters and sauté in remaining fat until slightly browned; add ground meat and rest of salt and continue cooking over moderate heat for 20 minutes, or until meat is nicely browned, stirring frequently. Meanwhile cook potatoes until tender in just enough boiling salted water to cover. Add the kidneys and potatoes with their cooking liquid to the ground meat. Thicken gravy if desired. Turn into an 8-inch casserole, cover with Plain Pastry gashed in several places to let steam escape. Bake in a moderately hot oven (425°F.) about 20 minutes or until crust is nicely browned. Serve hot. 5 servings. The Modern Family Cookbook


  1. Oh, my, this brings back a horrible memory. (We have many cooking disaster stories in my family, the most famous being the Thanksgiving turkey dropped on the brand new vinly fllor that Mom was so proud of. Unfortunately, the pan dropped too, and burned a large whole in the floor in the few seconds before it was picked up.)My mother decided to cook kidneys one time. She soaked them, poured the water off and the kitchen smelled very strongly of urine. She rinsed them, covered them with water again, soaked them a while longer, poured the water off and by then the whole HOUSE smelled strongly of urine. Being loathe to toss out something already paid for, she once again rinsed them, covered them with water and waited. The rest of us had deserted the house by then, but she stayed & stuck it out. When we finally returned, the house smelled strongly of brown-bottle Lysol. The kidneys were nowhere to be seen. I still don’t know what they taste like and have never been tempted to find out.

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