Lentil Shepherd’s Pie with Sweet Potato Mash (v)

I had a craving for this and loads of sweet potatoes that needed to be eaten so made it was…

For 3-4 portions (plus some filling left over for another day) you need:
Filling
1 cup puy lentils
1 cup green lentils
bay leaf
1 tin chopped tomatoes
2 large onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic
3 tbsp tomato puree
250ml red wine
1 tsp dried oregano
salt and pepper
1 scant tsp vecon stock (or marmite)
1 tbsp olive oil

Topping
3-4 sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped into rough chunks
2-3 tbsp soya milk
small knob vegan marg
salt and pepper
generous grating of whole nutmeg

Begin by washing the lentils thoroughly and then placing them in a pan with the bay leaf. Cover with water and bring to the boil. Boil rapidly for 10 mins and then reduce the heat and cook till done (about 30 mins or so). Drain and discard the bay leaf.

Meanwhile sautee the onion in the oil with the garlic. Add the tomatoes, puree, wine and cooked lentils. Season with salt, pepper, oregano and stock. Simmer for about 20 mins till the sauce is thickened and tasty.

Steam/simmer the sweet potatoes in a little water. Drain when cooked and mash with the soya milk, marge, salt, pepper and nutmeg. Place the filling in a dish and top with the mash. Bake in a hot oven for 15 mins or so till the topping is crispy. Serve as is or with veggies on the side.

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Quorn ‘Chicken’ Pot Pie with Vegetables

Mmmmmm. Pie. Just as well I was already a dab hand at pie making before falling in love with a Wigan-er 😉 This pie works well with any sort of filling, and if you omit the quorn and use pulses or seitan or something instead for protein it is vegan. Result.

For 4 people you need
250g quorn chicken style chunks, or some other sort of protein for a vegan version
1 tbsp olive oil
2 carrots, diced
2 leeks, sliced
1/2 cup frozen sweetcorn
200ml veg stock
100ml soya milk
2 tsp cornflour slackened in a couple of tbsp of water
2 tsp wholegrain mustard
75ml white wine
1 pack ready rolled puff pastry
1 beaten egg or some soya milk to glaze

Gravy, mash and contrasting veggies to serve

Begin by frying the leek and carrot in the oil for 3-4 mins. Cover with the stock and cook out for a further 5 mins or so to ensure the carrot is tender in the finished pie.

Add the quorn/protein and sweetcorn, mustard and wine. Season to taste. Reduce the heat and add the soya milk. Stir through the cornflour mixture and stir over heat until the sauce is as thick as you want it to be (the longer you cook it for the thicker it will become).

Transfer into a pie dish and preferably leave to cool for an hour or so before topping with the pastry. It doesn’t matter if you can’t let it cool however.

Crimp the pastry and then brush with egg/milk and bake in a hot (200 degree) oven for 45 mins or so until piping hot and golden brown. Serve with veggies and mash and most importantly GRAVY! The fastest way to a pie eaters heart 🙂

Mixed Summer Berry Fruit Pie (v)

I cleaned out the freezer last week in readiness for this seasons new crops. Lurking at the back of the freezer were bags of last summers fruit: red currants, black currants, strawberries, gooseberries, blackberries, raspberries. I made some jam from strawberries and red currants, but still had enough fruit left over to create this pie.

For 6-8 portions you need
Pastry
8oz plain flour
4oz vegan margarine
cold water

Filling
4 cups mixed fruit
1/2 cup vanilla sugar (or to taste)
2 tbsp cornflour

Place the flour and vegan spread in a food processor and blitz till it resembles breadcrumbs. Add the water a little at a time until a dough is formed. Push into a disc shape in clingfilm and leave to rest for 5 mins.

Gently heat the berries and sugar in a pan for 3-4 mins until the juices run. Strain off any liquid (this prevents the pie from becoming too soggy). Mix in the cornflour to the strained fruit.

Cut the pastry into two chunks of 1/3 and 2/3. Roll out the large portion and use to line a pie dish. Fill with the fruit and then roll out the remaining pastry to form a lid. Brush with soya milk and sprinkle over a little extra caster sugar.

Bake in a moderate oven (180 degrees) for 30-45 mins until the pie is golden brown and crisp.

Probably The Most Awesome Vegan Pie Ever (v)

OK, OK, I am feeling rather smug after tonight’s dinner marvel, but it was delicious. Really, really delicious. And it was also very easy to make, and used up some of the veg that has been looking sadly up at me from the bottom of the fridge for the last week. Because it’s vegan, there’s no cream in the recipe, just some soya milk which makes a lovely creamy sauce. And this makes it a healthy choice too if you’re watching the calories, what more do you need to convince you to try it 😉

For 4-6 portions you need
1 sheet puff pastry, rolled out to .5cm thickness
1 leek, finely sliced
2-3 carrots, peeled and cut into bite sized pieces
2-3 parsnips, ditto the carrots
4-5 mushrooms cut into chunky slices
2 tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
1/2 pint soya milk plus a little extra for glazing the top of the pie
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp stock powder
2 tbsp finely chopped flat leaf parsely
salt and pepper

Begin by sauteeing the vegetables in the oil in a large pan. Cover with a lid and allow the veggies to steam fry for 5 mins or so. Remove the lid and increase the heat a little to evaporate off the mushroom juices.

Sprinkle over the flour and stock powder and allow to cook out. Add the mustard and slowly add the soya milk until it’s all absorbed and the sauce is nicely thickened. Season and add the parsley.

Place the vegetables and sauce in a pie dish. Put the puff pastry on the top and seal the edges. You don’t have to use a pie funnel but it will help to cook the inside out if you have one and prevent a soggy pastry lid. Crimp the edges of the pie and brush the top with a little extra soya milk.

Bake the pie in a hot (180 degree) oven for 30-40 mins until the pastry is golden, crispy and cooked through. Serve with baby jacket potatoes, steamed cauliflower and lashings of yummy gravy. Nomtastic.

Lentil Shepherd’s Pie with Sweet Potato Mash (v)

I fancied this, so I made it…

For 3-4 portions you need:
1/2 cup puy lentils
1/2 cup green lentils
1 bay leaf
2 onions, chopped
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp vecon stock paste
salt and pepper
3 large carrots, peeled and chopped
250ml red wine
2 tbsp tomato puree
3-4 large sweet potatoes, peeled and chopped
2-3 tbsp soya milk
1 small knob vegan marge
Generous grating of whole nutmeg
Salt and pepper.

Wash the lentils, then place in a pan with the bay leaf. Cover with water and bring to the boil. Boil rapidly for 10 mins then reduce the heat and simmer for 15-30 mins till the lentils are soft but not mushy.

Meanwhile sautee the onion, garlic and carrot in the oil for 10 mins. Add the tomatoes, puree, wine, salt, pepper, oregano and stock. Cook for 10-15 mins till thickened. Once the lentils are done, drain and add to the tomato sauce. Mix well.

Cook the potatoes in a pan with a little water. Drain, mash with the milk and marge. Season with salt, pepper and nutmeg. Place the filling in a dish and top with the mash. Bake in a hot oven for 15 mins or so till the mash has browned slightly. Serve with veg or as is…

Apple Pie (v)

This of course could be any fruit pie, or indeed a savoury pie if you felt so inclined. The basics of the recipe remain the same: make pastry; make filling; fill; bake; eat.

For 6-8 slices you need:
700g peeled, cored and sliced cooking apples
2.5 tbsp vanilla sugar plus a little extra for the top
50g vegan marge or butter
1/2 tsp vanilla bean paste
250g vegan marge
500g plain flour
a little water
a little soya milk

Begin by making the pastry. In a food processor (or by hand if you don’t have one) process the fat and flour till it resembles fine breadcrumbs. With the motor running add just enough water to bring it together. Tip onto a work surface and knead very gently and briefly. Leave to rest for 30 mins or so.

Meanwhile make the filling. Place the apples, sugar and fat in a pan and heat gently for about 20 mins until most of the apple is puree but some biggish chunks still remain. Leave to cool a little.

Roll the pastry out and use it to line a pie dish. Trim the edges. Place the filling inside and then roll out the top piece. Brush the edges of the pie bottom with some soya milk and place the top on top. Crimp the edges with a fork and trim again. Brush the top of the pie with soya milk and then sprinkle over some more sugar. Make a couple of steam vents in the middle.

Place the pie on a pre-heated baking tray and bake at 190 degrees for 20 mins. reduce the heat to 170 degrees and bake for a further 25-35 mins till golden brown and cooked through. Leave to cool slightly before serving with vanilla swedish glace or vegan custard.

Crustless Lime and Lemon Meringue Pie

Crustless cos I couldn’t be arsed to make pastry. I mean, it’s not the pastry you eat this for is it? And Lemon and Lime cos I only had two lemons and needed three…

For one pie you need:

Base:
Juice and zest of 2 lemons and 2 limes
3 egg yolks
450ml water
6 tbsp cornflour
45g butter
90g caster sugar

For the meringue:
3 egg whites
180g caster sugar

For the base, mix the cornflour with a bit of the water to slacken it and then place the remaining water in a pan with the sugar and bring to the boil. Once the sugar has dissolved add the lemon juice, zest and cornflour to the sugar syrup. Return to the heat and stir till thickened. Remove from the heat and add the butter and egg yolks. Leave to cool in the pie dish.

For the meringue whip the whites till really stiff then add the sugar. Mix till glossy.

Once the base is cold, and more solid, cover with the meringue taking care to spread right to the sides. Bake in a moderate (160 degrees) oven for about 45 mins. Leave to cool before eating, however hard that might appear cos it will smell gorgeous. Try not to eat it all on one day.

Quorn and Mushroom Pot Pie

Oh my. Oh my indeed. Yes I know it’s not modest but I *am* an utter culinary genius if this pie is anything to go by (and I am also blogging this rather pissed…!). I had been hankering after a lovely, creamy, rich fake chicken and mushroom pie all xmas so this is what I made for dinner last night. It was lovely.

For a pie that will serve 3-4 people depending on greed you need:
1 packet quorn chunks
1 onion, diced
125g mushrooms, sliced
150ml white wine
75ml double cream
250ml vegetable stock
1 pack all butter puff pastry
2 tbsp fresh chopped flat leaf parsley
salt and pepper
2 tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 egg

Begin by frying the onion in the oil for about 5 mins. Add the mushrooms, and taking note from Julia Child DO NOT CROWD THE PAN ;-). Cook for a further 5-10 mins until the mushrooms are lightly browned.

Add the quorn and sprinkle over the flour and cook for 2-3 mins. Add the wine and boil briefly. Add the stock and the cream and parsley and cook for another 2-3 mins until the sauce is thickened and lovely. Check the seasoning.

Place the filling in a pie dish and top with the pastry. Decorate as you wish, not forgetting the steam holes, and brush with egg glaze.

Bake in a hot oven for about 30 mins until the filling is piping hot and the pastry is risen and golden. Serve with mash and veggies.

Mississippi Mud Pie

I am working my way through the Hummingbird Bakery book at the moment and am trying out some of their pies. I love pies, but hardly ever make them due to the perception that it’s lots of hassle. It’s not. And the resulting pies have been to die(t) for. I am getting so fat from all of this! This pie is all you’d expect from the genre. Oozing, bitter chocolate base, crispy pie case and fluffy mounds of cream on the top studded with chunks of bitter chocolate. Heaven.

For 10-12 slices you need:
Filling:
150g bitter chocolate
50g butter
30g golden syrup
6 eggs
300g soft light brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
350ml double/whipping cream

Pie crust:
260g plain flour
110g butter
2-3 tbsp water

Make the pie crust by pulsing the butter and flour together in a food processor and then adding the water. Form into a dough and leave to rest for a bit wrapped in cling film. Then roll out and line a pie dish. Bake blind with beans for 10 mins and then without the beans for a further 10 mins.

Meanwhile make the filling. Melt the butter, chocolate and syrup together. Leave to cool slightly. Whisk the eggs and sugar till fluffy and combined. Add the melted chocolate and mix well. Pour into the dish and bake in a moderate oven for 30-40 mins taking care not to burn the filling. It’s done when the middle is set but still a bit wobbly. Leave to cool completely then refrigerate overnight. Just before you want to serve whip the cream and pile on the top. Sprinkle over grated chocolate before serving.

Cheesy Leek and Potato Pie

OK so this is a but of a cheat recipe in that it’s the same as the pasties but sufficiently different to warrant its own entry. IMHO.

For one pie you need:
1/2 quantity onion, leek and potato filling from the pasty recipe
1 pack ready rolled puff pastry

Line a pie dish with the puff pastry, saving the trimmings for the top. Add the filling and brush the edges with egg wash to seal. Lay on the top piece and crimp. Brush with egg wash and then bake for about 45 mins till hot and golden brown. Serve with new potatoes, veggies and lashings of gravy. Spiffing.