Beef, tomato, olive and rosemary pies

Photographer: Emma
Makes 4 small or 1 large pie

A good pie is one of those guilty pleasures; light, buttery pastry with a tasty (typically) beef, chicken or vegetable based filling.  On the other hand, a bad pie of questionable origins (tales of luke-warm pies from tepid pie warmers spring to mind) can put you off ever eating pies again. Now it is no secret that us Kiwi’s are partial to a good pie so if you too are a fellow pie lover then this is just the recipe for you.

I first made this pie for my flatmates one bleak wintry Sunday evening.  Inspired by thoughts of sunning myself on an island in the Mediterranean I concocted this pie recipe.  With a beef and tomato base, this pie is flavoured with a punchy combination of rosemary, olives, lemon zest, chilli and parmesan cheese and is delicious paired with a simple green salad.

Try replacing the mince with roast vegetables for a tasty vegetarian version.


2 tbsp olive oil
2 medium onions, chopped
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
a large sprig of fresh rosemary
½ tsp chilli flakes (or to taste)
1 lemon, zested
3 tbsp capers
½ cup (approx 25) olives, roughly chopped
600g mince
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
1/3 cup parsley, chopped
2 x 400g tins tomatoes
5 heaped tbsp tomato paste
5-6 sheets flaky puff pastry
40 g parmesan cheese, grated
1 egg, lightly beaten


1. Preheat the oven to 180 degrees C.
2. Fry the onions and garlic in the olive oil until they become translucent and start to soften.
3. Add the rosemary, chilli flakes, lemon zest, capers and olives and fry over a medium heat for approximately 15 minutes.
4. Add the mince and the balsamic vinegar and continue to cook over a medium heat until the mince has browned.
5. Add the parsley, tinned tomatoes and tomato paste and cook over a low heat until the mixture is rich and thick. It is this long, slow cooking that really makes these pies.
6. Cut 4 circles out of the pastry. These will be the lids of the pies so make sure they are the right size.
7. Grease 4 individual ramekins (I used ramekins which measure around 12cm and had to puzzle the pastry together a bit) and line them with the remaining pastry making sure to leave a bit of extra pastry draped over the sides in order to join sides to lid.
8. Fill the lined ramekins with the mince filling just short of the top and then divide the parmesan between the 4 ramekins, sprinkling it over the mince.
9. Place the pastry rounds on the top of the pies and press the edges together to seal. Make an incision in the lid so that the steam can escape during cooking.
10. Brush the pies with the egg wash and decorate with the remaining pastry if desired (I did little leaves).
11. Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the pastry is golden.

* If you don’t have ramekins use a large pie dish instead.