Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Skippy Pie

There's no reason why as Australians we don't eat more kangaroo. I know there is that emotive issue of it being one of our national emblems but hey, the leek is a national emblem of Wales and they don't seem to have any issues about eating it.

Now if you feel you might be offended about the content of this post then I suggest you stop reading now rather than post anonymous comments telling me how sick I am for cooking with kangaroo - it's a waste of your time and my time since those comments end up where they should be.

Comfort food has been on the mind of late and thoughts turn to that classic, Shepherd's Pie but instead of using the traditional lamb in the base, I'll be using these kangaroo steaks

kangaroo steak© by Haalo

These steaks, as is the case with all kangaroo meat, are incredibly lean - less than 2% fat. It is also low in saturated fats, contains omega-3's and a slew of B-vitamins. All up it is an incredibly healthy meat.

Since I'm using kangaroo I really can't call this a Shepherd's Pie so after much thought I decided to name it up after that most famous Kangaroo, Skippy!

skippy pie© by Haalo

Skippy Pie

250 grams kangaroo steak, minced
1 large red onion, sliced finely
1 carrot, grated
2 celery stalks, chopped finely
tomato paste
chicken stock
balsamic vinegar

potatoes (i used nicola potatoes)
salt and finely ground white pepper
grated parmesan

As kangaroo oxidises quite quickly it's important to mince the meat yourself just before you are ready to cook it - make sure the other filling ingredients are prepared first.

Make the filling:

Place a little oil in a heavy based pan over a medium-high heat. When the oil is heated through, toss in the minced kangaroo and very quickly saute the meat until just coloured. This should only take a couple of minutes. Remove the meat and set to one side.

Turn the heat down, add a little more oil and bring back up to temperature. Add in the sliced onion and cook for a few minutes - just so they begin to soften without browning. Add in the carrot and celery, toss them slightly and allow them to slowly soften and colour - this should take about 15 minutes.

Stir through a generous spoonful of tomato paste and cook it off for a minute or two, then add back the meat and all its collected juices. Pour in enough chicken stock to cover the mixture and let this simmer for 15 minutes.

Toss in a handful or two of frozen peas and add extra chicken stock if necessary to cover the mixture again. Simmer until the stock has reduced.

Taste and season with salt and pepper and a good glug of balsamic vinegar.

Dissolve a tablespoon of cornflour in with a little chicken stock and stir this through the cooked mix - keep stirring until it thickens. Remove from the heat and set aside until ready to assemble your pie.

Make the topping:

Boil the potatoes until tender and then put them through a potato ricer. Crumble in cubes of butter and sprinkle over with grated parmesan, season and stir well until combined. I'm being vague with the quantities as it really is up to you and your preference as to how buttery or cheesy it is.

Assemble the dish:

Place the filling into a baking dish - it should be about 3/4's full.

 skippy pie© by haalo

You can either spoon on the mashed potato topping or pipe it as I've done here.

 skippy pie© by haalo

If you don't want to make a large size - consider making these cute single serving size versions

individual skippy pie© by haalo

Place the baking dish on a baking tray and bake in a preheated 160C/325F oven until the topping is golden and the filling has warmed through.

skippy pie© by Haalo

Serve with a simple salad and some bread.

skippy pie© by Haalo


  1. What gorgeous piping of the potatoes, too!

    Comfort food is on everyone's mind just now. This looks like a satisfying variation on the traditional.

  2. It must be something hard-wired into my brain. When I saw the individual serving, my mind went "Awwwww." Who knew Shepherd's Pie could be cute. Nice work!

  3. You think you might have trouble with this... I'm preparing some posts about camel, llama and ostrich meat.

  4. Hmmm...we must be able to import kangaroo meat here in NZ. Never knew it was such a healthy option either.

    Still, I think Roo Stew might sound more appetizing than Skippy Pie...after all, I still see the cute fuzzy animal clicking away..."What's that Skippy? Someone's invited you to tea? And you say there's a surprise main dish? What are we waiting for, Skippy!"...

  5. Thanks Sophie - hope you get to make it!

    Thanks T - you can't beat comfort food, it lives up to its name

    Thanks lgk - there is something about those small versions

    Trig - As a member of PETA - People Eating Tasty Animals, I can't wait to read that post, the llama has me intrigued!

    Hi Nukiwi - I thought it was imported to NZ but maybe it isn't. I named it Skippy Pie because those sounds of appreciation while eating it sound just like Skippy ;)

  6. Hi,

    Skippy pie sounds a bit emotionally loaded to me... like eating a Lassie Pie or a Flipper Pie :o)

    How about Brian and Sheila Pie ;-)

    Thanks for the great recipes!
    A loyal Swiss reader.

  7. Love the name. LOVE IT.

  8. Thanks Anon, glad you enjoy the recipes!

    Thanks Jo!

  9. I don't think I've ever seen such pretty mashed potatoes, whenever I make a meat pie, it doesn't come out this photogenic :)! Delicious and hearty, I like it!

  10. Thanks Sophie, you are too kind!

  11. Just found this old gem of yours on the search engine looking for a yum pie filling. My son can't eat tomato so I left out the tom paste and added a generous helping of red wine. Haven't even put it in the dish yet and I'm having to resist the urge to eat it straight from the pan!

    I'm a long time roo meat lover but roo pie will now be a new regular on the menu! Yummo!

  12. Me just found it too - 3 years on :-) Skippy Pie - fantastic and we will call it than from now on lol.

    Interesting recipe, especially the addition of Balsamic Vinegar! I've always just taken beef recipes and used those - but with additional fat to compensate for Skip's leanness.

    I will try your recipe out today (freezing a load down). We are also Roo meat lovers, harvesting from roadkill (always seems such a waste and is great if fresh and doesn't actually have tire marks right over it!), and make pies, chilli, bolognese, steaks and (my favorite) Biltong.

    Mark W


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