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Meat Pies! Again!!!

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    Meat Pies! Again!!!

    OK, made some more pies, yesterday. tried a couple of things. here's what I learned. Yes, you can put the shells in the oven to dry them just be aware that when they are taken from the cans, about half of them will crumble. that's OK, cause they are YUMMY just like that!

    I tried a new technique, forming my crust INSIDE the pan/can, putting the meat in and sealing it, baking in the pan. they make nice little pie tins. reusable, of course, and a nice finished pie. the end result is about 1/2" smaller in diameter. leaving it in the tin means the juices are left in the dish. good thing/bad thing. the juices soak nicely into the crust. on the other hand, allowing the juices to leave the pie means you are going to have more caramelization IN the pie, on the inside, bottom & out of the crust. your crust is nicely crispy, either way, though more moist on the inside. the metal conducts the heat to the outside of the crust and browns it nicely.

    notice the crackled texture on the lid. this was unplanned but I kinda like it. when I assembled the pie, I put the egg on the pie right then. HWMO came home and chose his dinner. I had two on the counter for him, one a freestanding built on the outside of the can, the other inside the can. Now, when making the freestanding version, I egg wash the entire surface of the pie. everything except the bottom (though, now that I think of it, I may wash the bottom before I stuff, next time). so, he chose the freestanding, mostly because it was slightly larger. he did not realize I had made up the difference by building up the center mound of meat. Anyway, his came out the way they did last bake. but, since I had washed both, this one went into the fridge and the wash set up. I did not wash it again. when it baked off, I had this lovely crackle. I think I like it. I may start washing a standard step before storage.

    because this one had been refrigerated overnight, it had about an additional 10 minutes on the bake, making it 25-30 minutes. until nicely browned, bubbling juices. I took it out to check before I was happy. I put a teaspoon of beef gelatin in at that time and popped it back into the oven. the beef gelatin was still warm since I just strained it off this morning.

    Now, I can't put this under a meat category cause this one is most of my 4 legged friends. I have beef, lamb, pork, bacon and just a little bit of Cherizo. We had about 2 1/2" left in the fridge so I tossed it in. a nice interesting addition.

    Next time, I am considering a couple of things I have not done before. either add veggies (which I really don't want to do in a pie this small) or simply use a fork to open the meat. when it bakes off, the meat becomes a solid mass. many of us know what happens when there are not enough bread crumbs in the meatloaf (OMG! Hot pastry, rolled, baked and crumbed for meatloaf!!) Ahem, Ok, so since this is just meat filling, it all cooks together pretty tightly. not so much that you need a knife but some folks would probably like it to be a little more open. So, what I am going to do is put in my meat, then use a fork to dock it, all through the pie (but carefully not through the crust) before adding the lid.

    I can pass along recipes if anyone wants them but the only one you really need is the hot pastry recipe. everything else if pretty much, "empty the fridge, season as you prefer, stuff, close, bake, eat." The myriad of mixtures is endless. Think of them as mini meatloaves (this is the way meatloaves began) enclosed in the most marvelous pastry! the traditional Ploughman's Loaf also included trimmed boiled eggs. trimmed on two sides so that no matter how you slice it, everyone gets a little yolk. So, dust off the 1,001 ways to make meat loaf book and try their various and sundry combos in a crust.

    Here are the pics from last night and today. I hope it is whorthwhile to see the difference in the two baking styles, in or out of the pan. Click image for larger version

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    Someone mentions Meat Pies, and I automatically think of microphones....why is that?


    • Karon Adams
      Karon Adams commented
      Editing a comment
      Don't know. I generally think about good lookin guys in kilts as far as the eye can see!

    I still have crusts (not feeling great the last couple of days) so I am going to make another for lunch today. I think I may go topless!! I am also considering mixing a little brown sauce in the meat before stuffing.

    meanwhile, butt on the smoker tomorrow night, bacon added next morning (two days without bacon, maybe that's why I don't feel well. withdrawal stinks!)

    next job is to slightly adjust hot pastry recipe for fruit pie. I want to try it as the fried pie my grandmother used to make, a mini fruit pie freestanding and in the can, and lastly, as a full sized pie. Something tells me, the Hot Pastry is going to make an outstanding fruit pie crust.

    For those who are interested, this crust sounds like it would be tough. it is SO not! when the hot water & oil hits the flour, it causes the INSTANT gelatinization that gives you beautiful gravy or pastry cream. when the crust releases it's water, through slow drying, then baking, you are left with a crispy, delicate crust with just as much yummy as a cold crust. I actually think I like this texture better! if the finished pie is as good as I think it is going to be, I'll be SO done with cold pie crust.



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