Not quite all of that massive roast pork loin managed to get eaten so I was left with the question of what to do with the left over meat. There are a gazillion things you can do with cold meat, but I was in the mood for a Pie so that’s what happened. Here’s a little recipe for a pretty simple Pork, Leek and Fennel Seed Pie that will happily serve 4.
First off, make the pastry. This is what’s called a Rich Shortcrust pastry and is not my recipe, but the one I learnt at catering college – there are some things you don’t mess with:
170g plain flour, pinch of salt, 100g butter (cold, i.e. straight from the fridge), 1 egg yolk, 2 tbsps cold water
Place the flour in a food processor with the pinch of salt. Cut the butter into small pieces and add to the flour. Blitz until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
Pour the water and egg yolk through the funnel onto the flour / butter mix. Blitz until it comes together into a ball. Stop straight away – it’s important that you don’t over work the dough as it’ll develop the gluten and make the pastry chewy.
Wrap up in cling film and put in the fridge for at least 30 mins (or until you’re ready to use it).
1 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, 1 carrot and 1 stick celery – all finely diced
2 leeks, halved lengthways and cut into 2 cm pieces
Pinch of salt, 1/2 tsp fennel seeds and 1 bay leaf
1 large clove garlic, chopped
1 1/2 tbsp flour
150ml white wine
380g cooked pork meat
500ml water or good quality stock
1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
Heat the olive oil in a pan. Add the onion, carrot, celery, leeks, salt, fennel seeds and bay leaf. Cook for about 10 minutes until the vegetables are nicely softened, stirring occasionally. Add the garlic and cook for a further two minutes. Now add the flour and cook for three minutes, stirring. Add the white wine and pork and cook for 1-2 minutes until the wine has cooked off.
Add the water (I used water as I didn’t have any nice stock) and slowly bring up to the boil, stirring all the time. Then let it bubble away for 5-7 minutes until you have a nice consistency. Stir through the mustard and season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Pour into a pie dish (or in my case two small dishes) and leave to cool for 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 190c.
When ready to cook, remove the pastry from the fridge.
Dust a kitchen surface with flour and roll out the pastry so it’s a bit larger than your dish.
Place the pastry on top and trim the edges.
Cut a little steam hole in the middle and brush with egg yolk or milk.
It was just James and me eating and seeing as this recipe serves four I split the mixture between two dishes and let one cool completely and then topped it with half the pastry (destined for the freezer). The other we ate for lunch. As you can see from the pics both my dishes were a bit deep for the filling so I improvised a little by making the pastry run up the sides. It worked well, but obviously if you have the correct sized pie dish (which the filling fills) probably best to use that…
Bake for 25-30mins, until the pastry is nice and golden and serve with a salad, peas or some delicious greens.