Would you like one of these on your buffet table? They’ve gone down a storm here and I bet they will with you too!
Hot water crust pastry
340g plain flour
1 tsp salt
500g minced pork (the best quality you can find)
125g streaky smoked bacon, diced
1 tbsp fresh sage, finely chopped
1 tbsp fresh parsley, finely chopped
Salt and pepper
1 tsp dried thyme
1 small onion, finely diced
6 eggs, large (hard boiled)
1 egg beaten for egg wash
250ml chicken stock
2 sheets of gelatine
Makes: 1 x 2lb loaf tin pie
Begin by hard boiling the 6 eggs (in a pan of boiling water – 6 minutes)
Remove them from the pan of water and place them into a bowl of cold water to cool.
Remove the shells from the eggs and trim the tops and bottoms flat (so they’ll fit together in the pie) and set them to one side.
Prepare the tin – a 2lb loaf tin. Grease it well and cut 2 strips of baking paper to line the inside with a good overhang.
Now to the pastry, combine the flour and salt in a large bowl.
Heat the water and lard in a small pan until the lard has completely melted.
Pour it onto the flour in the bowl and mix with a wooden spoon until the pastry comes together evenly. Remember it will be hot so don’t put your hands in!
Leave it to cool a little until it is safe to handle.
Lay a sheet of clingfilm on the work surface and place the pastry on top. Roll it out so that it is big enough to line your tin and trim it a little if you need to.
Lift it up using the clingfilm underneath and gently ease it into the tin. If the pastry is slipping and sliding everywhere and breaking up then it’s still a bit too warm to handle so let it cool a little more before attempting to roll it out again.
Ease it into the corners and base of the tin before gently removing the clingfilm.
Leaving a lip of pastry around the edge trim away the excess pastry and gather it together. Wrap it in clingfilm and set to one side to create the top shortly.
In a large bowl mix up the filling, working together the minced pork, bacon, sausagemeat, onion, herbs, salt and pepper and egg. Make sure the mixture is seasoned well.
You can test for taste by frying a small portion of the meat in a frying pan and then adjusting if you need to.
Add half of the filling to the lined tin creating a little groove down the middle for the eggs to sit in.
Place the trimmed eggs in a line end to end through the middle.
Fill down the sides and over the tops of the eggs with the remaining filling.
Take the last of the pastry and roll it out to fit the top of the pie.
Lift it over the top and press the edges of the pastry together and then trim them neatly with a sharp knife. Press the seal together again and poke three large steam holes in the top of the pie.
Brush well with the egg wash and bake in the oven for 30 minutes at 200c (fan)/220c/Gas Mark 8 before reducing the temperature to 180c (fan)/200c/Gas Mark 6 and baking for a further 1 hour.
Remove from the oven once baked and make sure the steam holes haven’t sealed up, opening them again with a sharp knife if necessary and allow to cool.
Once the pie has cooled fully warm the chicken stock with the gelatine until fully dissolved.
With the pie still in the tin pour the stock mixture into the pie through the steam holes allowing it to fill the space in the pie slowly before adding more – use a funnel if you have one otherwise fashion yourself a small one from foil to help get it in the right place!
Chill fully and allow the jelly to set then slice and serve!
Ruth Clemens, Baker Extraordinaire