Browsing Tag

savory pies

Hand Pies

Roasted Tomato, Garlic, Herb & Cheese Pies

July 23, 2023

Because I love them so, herbs dominated my vegetable garden this year—dill, oregano, lovage, lavender, parsley, French tarragon, lemon balm and lemon thyme, plus many kinds of basil, rosemary, and sage. Yes, all of those lovelies, plus a few veg essentials: including tomatoes! Waiting for the red globes to reach their peak, I first made these delicious savory hand pies with plump and pretty store-bought Campari (sometimes called “cocktail”) tomatoes, later switching to homegrown. Camparis are the perfect size for the recipe (less fleshy that big tomatoes, and less fiddley than cherries to slip the skins off of after roasting ) but the recipe works with any size of the fruit. (If you use big tomatoes, just cut them into eighths.)

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Savory Pies

British Picnic Pie

May 20, 2023

These British-styled picnic pies put me in mind of a Wind in the Willows repast with loyal Moley, adventurous Ratty and the always intractable Toad.  Both elegant and transportable, the pies are perfect for your picnic hamper, or impressive to set out with sharp aged cheddar, whole grain mustard and pickles at your next party. Filled with minced ham, pork tenderloin, sage and parsley, they are packed with flavor  

The pies do take time to make, but keep well, so I prepare them ahead of time. You can space things out to fit your schedule, preparing the filling and stock one day, and then baking the pies the next. I use bone-in ham to make these (the bone for the stock; the ham minced in the pie.) If you’re not familiar with a traditional hot water crust: It’s easier to make (and more forgiving) than a pie crust, and goes back to early medieval times. But while 6th century hot water crusts were made with lard and intended primarily as casings to be discarded in favor of the tender meat inside, my crusts are made with butter and bacon fat and while sturdy, taste great. This recipe makes six individual 3 ½-inch pies. (Or, you can do 3 of the little pies and one small rectangular loaf as I have done in the lead photo.) 

As each pie bakes, the meat pulls away a bit from the sides of the crust, leaving a little air pocket surround. To seal this, you’ll pour the hot stock you’ve made into to the vent hole at the top. As the stock chills, it will firm up into a sparkling jellied aspic that adds flavor and helps the pie keep longer.And if you are a savory pie fan, try our Melton-Mowbray styled British Pork Pies next!