top of page

Pie Floater (Australia)


Since I’m not allowed to cook kangaroo steaks, here’s a recipe for a completely different Australian masterpiece: the pie floater, South Australia’s gift to the culinary world. Imagine if you will: flaky pie crust, filled with seasoned ground meat and vegetables like leeks, carrots, and celery. So sort of like a beef or lamb pot pie. This is then floated in a bowl of bright green pea soup and served with a dollop of tomato sauce on top. Yep. I don’t understand it either. 


But let’s try!  This is, without question, the best recipe I’ve found.  Mainly because it’s the only one that makes each part of the floater individually; many say "Pick up a meat pie at the butcher's" - a silly thing to say when you live in the 99% of countries who don't have meat pie-selling butchers.  It also doesn’t require mediocre tomato sauce, because why?  I’m translating this from the original Australian English.



Part I:

  • 1 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 yellow onion, finely chopped

  • 1 lb ground beef

  • 1⁄4 cup tomato paste

  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

  • 1 1/2 cups beer (good beer - not Fosters)

  • 1 1⁄2 cups chicken stock

  • 2 teaspoons Vegemite (use Marmite if Vegemite not available)

  • 1⁄4 cup chopped fresh parsley

Part II:

  • 1/2 tablespoon olive oil

  • 1⁄2 yellow onion, extra, finely chopped

  • 1/4 lb potato, peeled, finely chopped

  • 2 cups frozen peas

  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint

  • 3 cups chicken stock

Part III:

  • 4 sheets frozen butter puff pastry, just thawed

  • 1 tablespoon creme fraiche



Part I:

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a frying pan over medium heat. Add onion. Cook for 5 minutes.

  2. Increase heat to high. Add ground beef. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes or until the ground beef starts to brown.

  3. Add tomato paste and flour. Cook, stirring, for 1 minute.

  4. Add beer and stir. Add stock and Vegemite. Simmer for 30 minutes until thickened.

  5. Add parsley. Set aside to cool.


Part II:

  1. While the ground meat mixture is simmering, heat remaining oil in a saucepan over medium heat.

  2. Add extra onion. Cook, stirring, for 5 minutes.

  3. Add potato, peas, mint and stock. Simmer for 20 minutes or until potato is soft.

  4. Cool slightly. Blend with a hand blender.


Part III:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Preheat oven tray on lowest shelf.

  2. Use a pizza cutter to cut a disc from the corner of 4 pastry sheets.

  3. Ease remaining pastry into four 4-inch (10cm) diameter round springform pans. Divide ground beef mixture among pans.

  4. Top each with a pastry disc. Press to seal edges. Trim excess.

  5. Cut 2 slits on each pie top. Place on tray. Bake for 15 minutes.

  6. Transfer tray to top shelf. Cook for 15 minutes until golden.

  7. Return soup to medium-high heat. Add creme fraiche. Simmer until warmed though.

  8. Divide soup among 4 bowls. Top with pies.


Adapted from:

Photo from as well.

bottom of page