Cookbook review: ‘Pie’ serves distinctly British fare

By Elizabeth Reid

For the Deseret News

Published: Tuesday, Sept. 24 2013 7:04 p.m. MDT

Lightly grease a fluted 14-by-4½-inch baking pan. Divide the dough into 2 portions, one slightly larger than the other. Roll the larger portion out to a rectangle big enough to line the base and sides of the pan. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator while you make the filling. Roll out the remaining pastry to a size large enough to cover the top of the pan. Place on a baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and also chill while you prepare the filling.

Place the eggs and sugar in a bowl and beat together. Stir in the cream, chocolate, and pistachio nuts, then pour into the pastry shell. Brush the rim of the pastry with milk and position the lid in place, pressing the edges to seal. Trim the edges and make a steam hole in the middle of the lid. Brush with milk to glaze and sprinkle with superfine sugar.

Bake for 30–35 minutes, then leave to cool for at least 15 minutes before removing from the pan. Place on a cooling rack and leave to cool for a further 10 minutes before cutting into slices. Letting the pie stand for a few minutes allows it to set, making it easier to slice. Don’t worry — it will still be warm and gooey!

*****

Shortcrust Pastry

This is a great all-purpose plain pastry which is robust and easy to handle.The proportions to remember are half fat to flour, with enough liquid to combine. I’ve tried other quantities but I always end up coming back to this pastry mantra and it works perfectly every time.This is the simplest and most widely used pastry and is suitable for either sweet or savory pies. The mixture of butter and lard or shortening really is the best combination for flavor and texture, producing a light, crisp texture and delicious, buttery taste. If you don’t want to use real lard, simply substitute a white vegetable fat shortening — you will find a whole selection to choose from. When making a sweet pie, add 2 tablespoons of superfine sugar to the dough mix.

Makes: 10ounce of pastry

1 ¾ cups plain flour

pinch salt

½ stick butter

¼ cup lard or shortening

2–3 tablespoons water, to mix

Sift the flour and salt into a bowl. Cut the fat into cubes and add this to the flour. Use your fingertips to rub the fat into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

Add the water very gradually, stirring it in with a knife. When the dough just sticks together, knead it lightly until it forms a ball.

Wrap in plastic wrap and allow to rest for at least 15 minutes in the refrigerator. It can be left in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.

Alternatively, it can be frozen until ready to use.

Note: Once you have the basic mixture, you can flavor it with toasted ground spices, chopped fresh herbs or toasted and finely chopped nuts.

— "Pie," by Angela Boggiano

Elizabeth Reid has bachelor's degrees in economics and history. She has worked in retail, medical billing, catering, education and business fields. Her favorite occupation is that of wife and mother. Her email is bizziereid@gmail.com.

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