Home Cook : Sharmini Jayawardena
Ok, here you are, the “something interesting” that I promised you while talking about the herb explosion? in our herb garden.
This pie is so very delicious if I may say so myself. You can literally go through it in one go. That’s how good it is.
If you need to add meat to it you can always make a chicken or beef stew with vegetables, which is equally delish!
The trick to getting the pastry right is to not handle it too much. The minimum of touching the better, I found out.
To Make the Vegetable Stew:
1.Cube – 2 carrots, 4 potatoes, 1 1/2 leaks,1 large onion.
2.Get a box full of fresh basil? and a handful of thyme leaves ready?
3.Make a rue in a deep pot by melting about 50grams butter. When it’s melting add 2 tblsps all purpose flour to it and cook it until a golden brown.
3.Add the cubed potatoes and stir it. Then add the carrots followed by the leaks and onion.
4.Fry the vegetables until you get a wonderful aroma but the cubed vegetable are firm.
5.Now add water to barely cover the vegetables and mix well.
6.Let the vegetables cook until done and the gravy thickens. Check for seasoning, i.e. for salt and pepper. (I added 1 tsp sea salt and 2 tsps crushed black pepper.)
7.When the gravy is adequately thickened, remove from fire and add the basil and thyme, stir well, cover and keep aside.
This quantity of stew was enough to fill a 1.2 ltr Pyrex pie dish.
Now for the Shortcrust Pastry for the Pie Crust:
500grams all purpose flour
(Always use half the quantity of butter to that of flour)
2 tblsps sugar
(this is optional. Sugar helps brown the pie crust. You can also achieve this by brushing some egg yolk, which is called egg wash, or brushing some water over the top and edges of the pastry.)
Pinch of salt
Ice water as required
1.Mix flour, sugar and salt in a bowl.
2.Add in the chopped cold butter and rub with your fingers to form course crumbs.
3.Add a splash of ice water and form a dough.
4.Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 30 mnts and use as desired.
Roll the pastry on a board, get it on your rolling pin and flop it into the pie dish. Pour in the stew until it reaches the top. Roll out more pastry to cover the top of the dish. Crimp the pastry around the dish. Brush it with water or do the egg wash on it.
Pop it into a pre-heated oven (for 30mnts at 230 C). Bake it for 30 mnts at a 230 C.
Serves 3 persons.