This is what we had for our xmas lunch this year.
The original recipe says to make them in ramekins, but I made these in my muffin tin so we could have smaller ones (I did double the mixture to make 12) – it was a bit fiddly getting the pastry into them, but it was worth it as they were very tasty & went down very well with our guests.
It’s worth reading all the comments on the original recipe – this is why I used two pieces of baking parchment.
This recipe will make 4 pies in ramekins or 6 in a muffin tin.
- 200g leeks, thinly sliced
- 25g butter, plus a knob
- 100g mushrooms, finely chopped
- 4 good pinches ground mace
- 4 good pinches thyme leaves, plus a few extra small sprigs to decorate
- 100g potatoes, grated
- 100g Puy or green lentils, from a can, rinsed and drained
- 100g cooked chestnuts, finely chopped
- 8 tbsp double cream
- 4 tbsp fresh cranberries, plus about 20 to decorate
- 1 egg, beaten, to glaze
- 2 tsp redcurrant jelly
For the Pastry
- 200g plain flour , plus a little extra
- 100g light vegetarian suet
- 8 tbsp milk
- Gently fry the leeks in the butter until softened. Add the mushrooms, mace and thyme, and turn up the heat a bit to soften the mushrooms and drive off any liquid that comes out of them. Stir in the potato for 2 mins, followed by the lentils, chestnuts and cream. Cook for 2 mins more, then take off the heat and stir in the 4 tbsp cranberries.
- To make the pastry, put the flour and suet in a food processor with 1 tsp salt. Whizz together until you can’t see any big suet lumps, then keep pulsing while you add the milk, a spoon at a time, until the pastry comes together.
- Roll out a quarter of the pastry on a lightly floured surface, then use a biscuit cutter to cut out an appropriate size lid. Use a small star cutter to cut out a star from each lid (I didn’t have one, so had to use a knife) then keep stars and lids covered with cling film.
- Cut 2 strips of baking parchment for each pie and use a little butter to stick one in each pie dish, so the ends of the strips stick out each side to help you remove the pies when baked.
- Gather lid scraps with the remaining pastry and divide into equal pieces for each pie. Roll out each to £1 coin thickness and use to line each pie dish with an overhang.
- Divide the filling between the dishes. Top each with a lid, and roll down the overhang to meet the lid. Use a fork’s prongs to press and seal edges. The pies can now be covered and chilled for up to 24 hrs before baking.
- Heat oven to 220C/200C fan/ gas 7.
- Brush each pie with beaten egg and bake for 30 mins.
- Lift pies from dishes and sit directly onto a baking sheet. Mix 20 cranberries with the redcurrant jelly and divide between the star holes on top. Brush pastry stars with beaten egg, add a small thyme sprig to each, then add to the pie baking sheet and put back in the oven for 5-10 mins, until pies and stars are golden and crisp.
- Top each pie with a star and serve.
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