British Pie Week
From 7 to 13 March it’s British Pie Week. According to British Baker, 3 out of 4 people in the UK eat a pie once a month. And yes we know, how can we trust the 25% of people who DON’T?! To celebrate this wonderful week, we share some of our fave recipes. And if you’re more of a fan of eating without any effort, we suggest some good places to inhale a delish pie too.
We’ve got everything you need to enjoy British Pie Week – from easy recipes to impress your mates, to our fave pubs to pick up a pie without the cooking hassle.
British Pie Week
Our pick of the pies.
KEEMA PIE – SOPHIE
I love both shepherd’s pie and spicy food, so when I discovered Keema pie I was in heaven: it’s basically an Indian shepherd’s pie. I’ve played around with the recipe a bit, but it’s dead easy to cook and whenever I make it for mates there’s never any leftovers, which is always a good sign!
- 300ml chicken stock
- 1 onion
- 2 garlic cloves
- 2.5cm ginger
- 500g mince (lamb or beef)
- 1 chilli
- 1tsp cumin
- 1tsp turmeric
- 1 tbsp coriander
- Tomato purée
- 1 tomato
- 1 cup frozen peas
- 4-6 sweet potatoes
1. Heat oil in a pan and add onion, garlic and ginger until brown
2. Add mince until brown
3. Add chilli, turmeric, coriander, cumin for another minute
4. Stir in tomato, purée and stock. Simmer for 30mins and add peas
5. Cook potatoes and mash
6. Transfer mince mixture to an ovenproof dish, plonk the mash on top, and bake for 30mins at 200C
You can add in carrots and mushrooms to bulk it out. The sweet potatoes don’t crisp up like white potato mash, so I add a sprinkling of paprika on top so it looks a bit fancier.
Nigella’s CHICKEN and bacon PIE – Becky
I absolutely love a good pie, especially accompanied by mash and gravy – you can’t beat it for comfort food. My fave to make is a Nigella recipe for a super-easy chicken and bacon pie with a puff pastry top. Normally I’d argue it’s not a proper pie, as it doesn’t have pastry sides – but it’s so delish and simple to make that I find I don’t care! Check out the recipe.
PIG PIE – SOPH BB
I found this pig pie on a Tesco’s menu card a few years back and to date, nothing has beaten its brilliant stodginess! Also super to eat cold for spring picnics or leftover lunches.
- Large knob of butter
- 1 x small red onion, diced
- 1 x large stick of celery, diced
- 8 x sausages, skinned and mushed in a bowl
- 1 x eating apple, keep skin on and dice
- Handful of chopped parsley
- 1 x egg, beat and to use to glaze
- 1 pack of short crust pastry (450g ones)
- Baking parchment on baking tray
1. Set oven at 200C
2. Sauté the onion and celery. Melt the butter in the saucepan and add onion and celery until just soft. Drain on paper towel and allow to cool
3. Mix the onion and celery in the bowl of mushed sausages, add the apple and chopped parsley, and season
4. Cut off one third of the pastry block and put aside, this is your lid
5. Roll out your pastry using a good rolling pin and some plain flour to avoid stickiness. A 28cm-ish circle should do it.
6. Spread the sausage mix evenly onto your pastry, leaving a 2-3cm border
7. Leave to one side and roll out your lid, large enough to cover the sausage mix. (Keep a tiny bit of pastry aside to make a creative pie topper)
8. Place your pastry lid over the meat mix
9. Brush the pastry border with the beaten egg then pull up to marry with your lid and pinch together. This should now be very pie shaped. If not, revert back a few stages!
10. Add your creative topping and a couple of pricks to let it breathe and brush all over with the rest of the beaten egg, this will make sure it gets a healthy glowing tan.
11. Put in oven and bake for 20-25 minutes, or until beautifully golden brown.
STEAK AND ALE PIE – SOPHIE
Steak and ale pie has to be one of the all-time classics. I found out a few years ago that in America savoury pies aren’t that popular. Yes, that’s right, in a nation where they enjoy pumpkin pie – a fruit we only hack at for Halloween because it’s so gross – they aren’t bothered about MEAT pies. Pfffffft. Clearly they haven’t been introduced to this beauty. There are loads of delish steak pies but the Hairy Bikers do a decent and less faffy steak and ale pie recipe. And this one from Marcus Bean is a bit poncier if you want to impress.
PIE OFF COOKING
Don’t have 2 hours to spare? Most (good) pubs offer pies on the menu these days, but hell, we’re not pie amateurs. Here are a few places to get a decent pie without slaving away in the kitchen.
The Windmill, Soho
For a start, anywhere that names their restaurant section ‘The Pie Room’ wins our vote. They offer award-winning pies ranging from the classics to more unusual such as chicken and chorizo. For the veggies out there they do a delicious chickpea, lentil and feta pie. They have a pie club you can sign up to for the latest pie news.
The Raven, Bath
Too many pies to list, but they use local ingredients, have a few veggie pies and also range from the classics to a bit weird and wonderful. They also do gluten free pies, ooh err. They happen to do a wonderful selection of beer too if you want something to wash it down with.
Pieminister, UK wide
Set up by a couple of mates in Bristol, and now supply pubs and have their own restaurants across the country. Seriously good pies, sustainably sourced, massive range of veggie and meat pies. Also, they have awesome names like the Moo pie (steak and ale) which is very difficult to order without making the actual cow noise. We’re just warning you.
JANE’S FAVE (as recommended by WHITNEY)
Flaming Galah, Norwich
There’s no arguing that pies have been around forever, probably since the Aztecs whose special would have resembled something very similar to the menu of Sweeney Todd’s. But my absolute favourite is Australian. The classic meat pie, mash and mushy peas is a popular truckies treat Down Under, but I’ve been lucky enough to find a friendly little pie shop in England, that serves traditional ‘Aussie Pies’! Flaming Galahs has surfboards for tables and nostalgic snapshots of Uluru and Sydney Harbour adorning its walls. Each week the shop features a unique flavour (I once saw The Elvis – a cheeseburger in a pie) but the flavour that has me drooling is The Grill – a Thai satay chicken pie filled with peanut sauce and large chicken breasts, topped generously with creamy mashed potato, mushy peas and homemade gravy. I love this pie so much that I once ordered two…If there’s ever an illustrative lesson of ‘eyes being bigger than belly’, that was it.
Happy British Pie Week!
Are you tucking into a delicious pie to celebrate British Pie Week?
Share you pie favourites with us – @tweetjanes!