Pork PIes – A British Favourite, are such great pies. The pies are made with a hot water crust pastry, which is so easy to make. The pies were, traditionally, hand raised. That was possible as the pastry is so sturdy.
Pork is cut into small cubes to use as the filling. However, if preferred, minced pork will work well too. Pork shoulder or belly of pork are both suitable cuts of meat for the pies.
Herbs are often used in the home made pies, such as thyme and sage. But more traditionally salt, pepper and mace are the seasonings.
The pies are perfect served with pickles, such as Branston, pickled onions, chutnies etc. They are perfect for lunch, or to take on picnics. Personally I like some with pickles, chips and baked beans. But however they are served they are very good indeed.
Although it might seem that this is a complicated recipe that is not the case. Indeed, although there are several steps, it is actually very simple. It just needs everything to be organised.
Chop the pork into small cubes. Season the meat and chill it. Make the pastry and allow it to cool.
Roll out the pastry and lines the pie tins. Then add the filling and top that with more pastry.
Bake the pies and let them cool for a while. Mix hot stock with gelatine and carefully pour that into the pies.
Chill the pies overnight for the jelly to set well.
Serve the most delicious pies.
Although I used 4 inch tins for my pies, which were quite large, smaller sized pies can be made too, in a muffin pan. That would make between 9 and 12 individual pies.
I mixed my seasoning into the meat and then covered it and chilled it for at least an hour. I made the pastry and kneaded it slightly then left it to cool.
Then I divided the pastry into 3/4 and 1/4 for the cases and the tops.
I lined the pie tines with pastry and then filled them with the seasond pork.
Then I placed pastry lids, with a hole in the middle, on and sealed around the edge.
I brushed the tops with egg wash and baked the pies for 50 minutes.
I needed an internal temperature of at least 75C and after 50 minutes it had reached 89C. So I knesw my meat was fully cooked.
I removed the pies from the oven and left them in the tins for 15 minutes and then carefully transferred them to a cooling rack for another 75 minutes,
As they cooled I heated my chicken stock and added gelatine to make my jelly liquid. Then I took my time to carefully pour the liquid into the pies, allowing it time to seep through to find the gaps to fill.
The pies were then allowed to chill, overnight, in the fridge.
The next morning I cut one of the pies and found the jelly had set well around the edge of the meat. I cut a small slice for tasting. It was wonderful, the perfect combination of the well seasoned meat and the sturdy pastry, with the slightly sweet jelly.
Another recipe, in a similar vein is Gala Pie.
Pork Pies – A British FavouriteCourse: Pies, TartsCuisine: BritishDifficulty: Medium
500g(3 1/3 cups, based on scooping packed flour into a 250ml cup) bread flour
200g(14 tbsp) lard
180ml(3/4 cup) water
4g(2/3 tsp) salt
1 egg, for an egg wash
650g(1lb7 oz) pork(shoulder or belly) finely cubed – see note 1 below
100g(3 1/2 oz) pork lardons – see note 2 below
15g(2 1/2 tsp) salt
8g(2 1/2 tsp) pepper( I used white pepper as I prefer that)
1.5g(1/2 tsp) ground mace( or slightly less nutmeg)
pinch of mustard powder
240ml( 1 cup) chicken stock
3 leaves of gelatine
- In a bowl mix the lardons into the rest of the pork.
- Add the salt, pepper, mace and mustard to the meat and use a hand to mix it all thoroughly to get the seasoning will distributed.
- Cover the bowl and chill the filling for at least an hour.
- Place the water, salt and lard into a saucepan and place on the stove to heat until lard has melted and the mixture comes to a boil
- In a large bowl place the flour and then add the boiling liquid.
- Use a spoon to stir together into a dough.
- When the dough is cool enough to handle tip it out onto a work surface and knead gently for about a minute, then set it aside to cool until just slightly warm.
- Divide the dough into 3/4 and 1/4, and wrap the smaller portion to set aside.
- Divide the large portion of dough into 4 equal pieces.
- Roll out each piece to a diameter of just over 8 inches and carefully place it in the tin.
- Press the dough around the sides, ensuring no air pockets, until it is slightly higher than the top edge.
- Divide the filling into four equal parts and squeeze into a ball.
- Place the balls into the pastry cases and press it down to compact the meat a little.
- Divide the remaining pastry into 4 pieces an roll out each one to 4 inches.
- Make a hole in the middle of the lids.
- Brush the edge of the pastry with some of the egg and place the lids on the pies.
- Press the edge of the lids to the sides of the cases and crimp all around the edge.
- Brush the top of the pies with egg wash and then chill the pies in the fridge for at leat 30 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 190C/170C Fan/375 F.
- Bake the pies for 50 to 60 minutes, until the top has browned nicely and the filling is piping hot, as least 75C/167F.
- Remove the pies from the oven and leave in the tins for 15 minutes.
- Carefully remove the pies from the tin onto a rack to cool for another 75b minutes
- Soak the gelatine leaves in cold water for 5 minutes.
- Heat the stock to boiling point.
- Squeeze the water out of the softened gelatine.
- Add the gelatine to the stock and stir to dissolve.
- Slowly, and carefully pour the stock into the holes on top of the pies, a little at a time.
- Allow the liquid to seep around the pies, topping up until seems to just pool in the hole.
- Place the pies in the fridge, loosely covered at first.
- Once the liquid has seeped away and cooled wrap the pies in aluminium foil or plastic wrap and chill overnight.
- 1. You can use minced pork instead, if you wish
- 2. If you don’t have lardons you can just use 100g more of the shoulder/belly pork