Bye-bye – No, Hello –the Old School English (and Every Other) Vintage-style Pie, Back in Fashion and Fresh Outta the Oven, Oozing Nostalgic Goodness and Consoling Warmth on a Gloomy Day.
STEAK AND BLUE CHEESE INDIVIDUAL POT PIES
Serves 6 A LITTLE EFFORT 3 hrs 40 mins + 1 hr, to cool
THE FLAVOUR COMBINATIONS PIE FILLING
1,5kg boneless stewing beef, cubed
50g cake flour
15ml (1 tbsp) olive oil
1 large onion, peeled and diced
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
500ml (2 cups) beef stock
250ml (1 cup) Guinness dry stout handful thyme leaves
3 carrots, peeled and cut into chunks salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
150g blue cheese (Stilton, if you can find it, but Gorgonzola will work), broken into chunks
1 x 400g roll puff pastry, defrosted but still chilled
1 beaten egg, to brush small handful sage leaves
HOW TO DO IT
1 For the filling, toss the steak cubes in the cake flour. Place the olive oil in a large stoveproof casserole dish over high heat. Brown the meat, in batches if necessary, until golden brown on all sides, about 15 minutes. Remove the meat from the dish and set aside. Lower the heat and fry the onion and garlic until soft and translucent, about 10 minutes. If necessary, add a little water to the pan and scrape with a wooden spoon to release any meat that has stuck to the bottom of the dish.
2 Return the meat to the dish and add the tinned tomatoes, the beef stock, stout and thyme. Simmer, covered, about 2 hours 30 minutes. Add the carrots and simmer, a further 30 minutes, before tasting the stew and seasoning accordingly. Allow the stew to cool completely (place the stew in a bowl in the freezer to speed up the process).
3 To assemble the pot pies, preheat the oven to 220°C. Divide the beef stew among 6 individual 10cm diameter ramekins or cocottes and dot the chunks of blue cheese of choice over the individual pie fillings. Cut 6 discs of 10cm diameter from the puff pastry. Place the discs on top of the ramekins to create a pastry lid (use a little beaten egg on the lip of the ramekins to secure the pastry). Brush the pastry with the beaten egg and sprinkle with salt. If desired, use the leftover pastry to decorate the tops of the pies and brush them with the beaten egg again, before topping each with a sage leaf. Bake the pies in the preheated oven, 30 – 40 minutes, until the pastry is golden and puffed. Serve immediately while still hot.
OLD-FASHIONED ENGLISH RAISED PORK AND CHICKEN PIE
There’s not really any way around this – this traditional pie takes a while to prepare; although there’s nothing difficult about it and most of the time it takes to make isn’t active prepping, but rather baking and cooling time. Make this when you have a few hours for leisurely pottering in your kitchen, and you’re in the mood for making something rewarding. I will say that the time spent is worth the final result!
Serves 6 A LITTLE EFFORT 3 – 4 hrs
THE FLAVOUR COMBINATIONS PIE FILLING
4 chicken breasts, cut into small cubes
500g pork sausages
250g streaky bacon, diced handful finely chopped rosemary, sage and thyme leaves
5ml (1 tsp) dried parsley
zest of 1 lemon
2 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
2,5ml (½ tsp) ground allspice
salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 hard-boiled eggs, peeled (optional)
HOT WATER PASTRY
450g cake flour
5ml (1 tsp) fine salt
85g butter + extra, to grease
110g vegetable shortening (Holsum),
chilled and cubed (available at Pick n Pay, in the butter fridge)
125ml (½ cup) milk
125ml (½ cup) water 1 beaten egg, to brush
cranberry jelly, to serve
HOW TO DO IT
1 For the pie filling, add the cubed chicken breasts to a large bowl. Squeeze the pork sausages out of their casings and into the bowl with the chicken, discarding the casings. Add the bacon, fresh and dried herbs, lemon zest, garlic and allspice. Season to taste. Using your hands – a bit messy, but the best way to get everything incorporated – combine the ingredients well. If you want to check the seasoning, add a little of the mixture to a frying pan and cook, then taste the cooked mixture and adjust the flavours based on what you taste, if needed.
2 It’s important to make your pastry* just before you plan to bake your pie – it needs to be used while still hot, otherwise it will dry out and become too brittle. Make sure all of your pastry ingredients are weighed and ready to go, your oven is preheated to 170°C, you’ve greased either a 24cm x 14cm x 7cm loaf tin, or a 20cm-diameter round, springform cake tin with a little butter, and lined the base and all of the sides with baking paper. *The pastry isn’t difficult to make at all, but the method is one you probably won’t be familiar with – it’s more similar to a choux than a standard pie pastry, so the texture is very soft and pliable. This is correct – you’ll press the pastry into your prepared tin, as opposed to rolling it out to line the tin.
3 For the pastry, sieve the cake flour and salt into a large bowl and make a well in the centre. Add the butter, vegetable shortening, milk and water to a small pot and bring to a boil, then remove from heat and pour the hot mixture into the well in the flour. Using a wooden spoon or spatula, mix to form a smooth, pliable dough. Once the dough is cool enough to touch, knead the dough in the bowl, until smooth and elastic. Set aside in a warm place to rest, 15 minutes.
Continue reading your story on the app
Continue reading your story in the magazine
In Safe Hands
Managing the safety of our food – from freezer or fridge to fork or fingers, indoors and outdoors – has many hidden dangers. In tribute to World Food Safety Day on 7 June, we consult the experts on some of your most commonly asked questions
On The Pulse
With plant-based meals on the rise and winter in full swing, it’s the perfect time to stock up your pantry with pulses. Here, we feed your mind to inspire you to feed your body with these affordable, satisfying and nutrition-packed little marvels
Making tools to source food was humankind’s earliest act of invention and creativity – a quest that inspires the work of Cape-based blacksmith Conrad Hicks and food designer Caro Jesse de Waal
What Fathers Want
Four fabulous South African chef dads tell us exactly what they’d like to be served this Father’s Day on 21 June. Take notes so you can treat your dad too…
the big freeze
Take advantage of the versatility of Clover Nutrikids Low Fat Yoghurt Dairy Based Snack by making a batch of popsicles – this way, you’ll have a ready supply of yummy frozen treats to enjoy in a flash!
Sorghum isa grain which originated in Ethiopia and is commonly grown in South Africa and Africa. It is best-known locally in its malted and ground form, Maltabella porridge. This superfood grew in popularity largely due to the fact that the sorghum plant thrives in drier areas. In addition, it’s extremely nutritious, being naturally gluten-free and rich in phenolic phytochemicals (which are antioxidants), fibre and iron.
OUMA'S CABBAGE FRIKKADELS WITH APPLE CIDER SAUCE AND DEEP- FRIED SAGE LEAVES
This is the most wonderful, homely meal. Made with pork mince and simple spices, the frikkadels are amazingly tasty wrapped in soft cabbage in an apple sauce, just like Ouma made them
Give down-to-earth dishes like this sweet potato salad and risotto an extra-tasty kick with the help of Clover Butro
A classic remix
This deliciously different spin on lasagne is ohso impressive, whether served to guests at your next lunch party or made with love for the most important man in the house on Father’s Day!
Young blood in the kitchen of Franschhoek stalwart Monneaux has reanimated the menu… and it’s drawing quite a crowd
AMAZON PLANS A CLOTHING STORE FOR A SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA MALL
Amazon says it plans to open a clothing store in a Southern California mall later this year, a first for the online behemoth and a fresh challenge for already struggling traditional retailers.
FBI, US AGENCIES LOOK BEYOND INDICTMENTS IN CYBERCRIME FIGHT
The FBI and other federal agencies are increasingly looking to counter cyber threats through tools other than criminal indictments, the head of the bureau’s cyber division said in an interview.
HOW TO CRUSH YOUR HOLIDAY DEBT
The holidays have left without a trace. Well, almost. Long after the decorations have come down, you still have debt hanging around.
AMERICAN AIRLINES REPORTS $931 MILLION FOURTH-QUARTER LOSS
American Airlines lost $931 million in the fourth quarter and the omicron variant of COVID-19 is delaying its recovery from nearly two years of pandemic.
WHY AIRLINES FEAR 5G WILL UPEND TRAVEL THIS WEEK
AT&T will postpone new wireless service near some airports planned for this week after the nation’s largest airlines said the service would interfere with aircraft technology and cause massive flight disruptions.
NETFLIX UPPING US, CANADA PRICES WITH COMPETITION GROWING
Netflix is raising prices for its video streaming customers in the U.S. and Canada, less than a year and a half since its last price increase, as competition from other streaming services increases.
LAWSUIT: GOOGLE, FACEBOOK CEOS COLLUDED IN ONLINE AD SALES
Newly unredacted documents from a state-led antitrust lawsuit against Google accuse the search giant of colluding with rival Facebook to manipulate online advertising sales. The CEOs of both companies were aware of the deal and signed off on it, the lawsuit alleges.
RED CROSS: HACK EXPOSES DATA ON 515,000 VULNERABLE PEOPLE
The International Committee of the Red Cross, which is best known for helping war victims, says hackers broke into servers hosting its data and gained access to personal, confidential information on more than a half-million vulnerable people.
The Forever Virus
The Omicron wave could possibly mark the beginning of the end of the pandemic. What else does the virus have in store for 2022 and the years to come?
Hole in the Net
What good is a social safety net if the people who need help the most can’t access it?