My kids were very happy about that too. The weather has certainly been conducive to eating lots of pie!
We all know about steak & kidney pie, but one of my mum’s go-to pies when I was growing up was a plate meat pie. Simple yet delicious!
You basically take beef mince (hamburger meat) and cook it in the oven in a pot covered with some water which you add Bisto gravy powder (gravy granules), an OXO cube (beef stock) and the secret ingredient, Marmite!
This cooks in the oven at 375 degrees for about 30 minutes. Pour the cooked meat through a strainer with a saucepan beneath and you have the beginnings of a wonderful gravy.
I have to say I am a stickler for homemade pastry. What can I say? I was brought up that way. It just tastes so much better. And the more you make it, the easier it gets! Another excuse to make more pies!
As my mum always told me, “It’s simple, every pastry dough is half fat to flour.” So for half a pound of flour you need 4 ounces of fat.
For a savory pie like the plate meat pie I would use 2 ounces of butter and yes, 2 ounces of lard. This makes for a very short, lovely pastry. I use the vegetable Crisco these days and it works fine. Does that make my pastry healthier?
I use a metal pie plate that cooks the pastry perfectly. Line the bottom and add the cooked meat with a little of the gravy juice, to make it nice and moist. And then put a lid on.
Make a couple of slits in the top to let the steam escape and cook in the oven at 400 degrees until the pastry is golden, about 25 minutes.
To make the gravy, take the juice from the cooked meat and add some more water or stock and bring to the boil. If you need to thicken it some more add some more Bisto powder (if you can get it) or thicken with cornstarch.
Serve with fluffy mashed potatoes and peas. We also love mashed carrot and turnip on the side too. Delicious dinner!
I also made a chicken potpie this week using a recipe from the Great British Chefs’ website (http://www.greatbritishchefs.com/recipes/chicken-mushroom-pie-recipe-cheddar-shortcrust).
The addition of cheese to the pastry was a great twist. The pastry did turn out to be very short and fell apart. But that’s another great thing about pastry, you can just stick it all back together and it still tastes wonderful.
So, now I think I need to make a sweet pie, maybe apple! What’s your favourite pie?