British Pie Week takes place during the first full week in March each year making the dates for 2019 4 March to 10 March.
With the pie being somewhat of a British institution, British Pie Week was originally started by Jus-Rol in 2007 and has been going strong ever since. After all, who doesn’t love a pie in its myriad forms?
The beautiful thing about a pie is that it can be so versatile: it can be made brim full of meat, it can be vegetarian or vegan, it can be sweet or savoury. Pies can be served cold such as a Pork Pie or hot such as a traditional steak and kidney. For many people, the pies served in many pubs and some restaurants consisting of a filling in a dish with the only pastry being just a topping, just doesn’t cut the mustard as a pie. We at Crafty Bug do tend to sit on this side of the argument I’m afraid – a pie should have pastry all around!
Although, for many, the word “pie” will conjure up a meat based pie such as steak and kidney or chicken and leek, there are many really tasty vegetarian or vegan pies. This melty cheese and potato pie should be pretty yummy and warming as well. The recipe comes from BBC Good Food and has 5 star review ratings. Do note though, that there appears to be a mistake in the recipe instructions as we think it should say to cook the potatoes for 20 rather than 2 minutes otherwise they are likely to be undercooked at the end. One particular challenge here, is to make sure the pastry is well sealed otherwise the melted cheese will escape, not only making a mess, but reducing the taste and texture of the pie filling.
Drawing from the apres-ski classic tartiflette, this indulgent pie transforms into a cheesy fondue with creamy sliced potatoes and crisp puff pastry …
Roll the remaining pastry out to a circle about 30cm wide, dusting with more flour if needed. Brush the edges of the pastry on the tray with egg, then drape over the larger circle and seal the sides well, crimping as you go round. A tight seal is important to stop the cheese escaping. Via bbcgoodfood.com
Probably one of the best know British pies is the Melton Mowbray Pork Pie. The following video is a clip from the Great British Bake Off in which Sue Perkins heads to Melton Mowbray to find out its history.
If you are now inspired to make your own pork pie, then this next video will help you on your way. It is from Good Housekeeping and demonstrates clearly how to make a hot water crust for your pie – something which is critical to a good pork pie.
The Good Housekeeping video doesn’t give you the recipe for the filling part of the pie so you might find this recipe useful:
500g (1lb) pork shoulder, cut into small (1cm) cubes or roughly blitzed in a food processor
120g (4oz) pork sausage meat (2 plump sausages)
180g (6oz) smoked bacon lardons or chopped streaky bacon
1/4 tsp ground mace or nutmeg
1/2 tbsp finely chopped fresh sage
½ tsp ground white pepper
1 egg, lightly beaten
150ml (1/4 pint) chicken stock
3 leaves gelatine Via realfood.tesco.com
Steak and Kidney Pie is about as traditional a British Pie as you could find on any menu. Next, we have Carl Smith from the Windmill showing you have to make his award winning version and very tasty it looks too! Sadly, it does commit the crime of not having a pastry bottom (probably because of the rich gravy I would guess) but that doesn’t detract from a jolly good recipe which is well worth looking at.
Stargazey Pie is a traditional Cornish pie, hailing from Mousehole, made with baked pilchards or sardines. It looks somewhat strange with the fish heads and (sometimes) tails poking out of the pie top – and so would make a great talking point if served to guests. This version below uses ready made pastry for added convenience
Find out how to make stargazey pie with this easy recipe – this traditional Cornish pie is made with herrings or pilchards and shortcrust pastry.
Soak breadcrumbs in milk until moist, mix with lemon juice and rind, half the chopped onion plus most of the parsley and seasonings. Use to stuff fish, scattering any leftover over the base of a deep, round 23cm or similar pie dish. Shortcrust Stargazey Pie | Pastry Recipes | Jus-Rol
Whatever you choose to do to celebrate British Pie Week, I hope you have fun and enjoy making a tasty, warming pie!