Recipe for Fiona’s vegetarian cheese and potato pie: delicious hot and even better coldPosted by Fiona Nevile in Savoury Pies, Vegetarian | 8 comments
“What is that wonderful smell, Conchita?”
I had just taken my potato and cheese pie out of the oven when Danny arrived back from a day in Birmingham. I knew that he would have already indulged in some fast food so I took a chance this afternoon and worked on a new recipe for cheese and potato pie. Although this is supposed to be very filling, Danny might consider this a snack, as he does pizza. I wonder if he’s the only person in the world that regularly asks for chips as a side dish for pizza?
“I did have a burger but give me a shout when it’s ready to serve. I’d love to taste it.”
Let’s get things straight here. When I first met Danny he loved everything that I cooked for him (well almost). After about a year or so I eventually twigged that he just liked food. All food really. It had to be burnt or raw for him to push his plate away. I also learnt that like me he gets grumpy when he’s hungry.
That’s when we started cooking together and developing our own recipes. When Danny tasted it he loved this pie.
“Can I have some more. It’s great! The potatoes are so light and fluffy.”
One of the great things about having an allotment three miles from home is that it’s the perfect opportunity to make picnic food. It would be silly to trek back for lunch at the cottage and anyway it’s always fun eating out of doors.
Sometimes I take hard boiled eggs and crusty, buttered bread with fruit to follow. Often I make sandwiches but the best option is a slice of pie – most of these can be frozen and just grabbed when I’m rushing out of the door. Bacon and egg pie is a firm favourite with me so that’s why I thought that I’d try a potato and cheese pie this week. Potatoes are high on Danny’s list of essential ingredients. Unlike most recipes that I found, I used floury potatoes rather than waxy – Roosters get the thumbs up from D for floury loveliness – I reckoned that they would make a wonderful light filling and let all the other flavours shine through.
I used racombole in my pie but you could use the equivalent amount of chives or Egyptian walking onion/Welsh onion stems. Incidentally racombole makes the best veggie frittata ever http://www.cottagesmallholder.com/tasty-spring-frittata-with-new-potatoes-rocambole-cheese-and-parsley-recipe-7303 – this has gold star carnivore appeal rubber stamped by D.
There are loads of potato and cheese pie recipes on the Internet. Some are very fancy with dollops of crème fraiche, at the other end of the scale there are pretty basic recipes but with spuds and lashings of cheese they probably would be tasty too. I hope that my recipe bridges the two. There was a lot of happy and gluttonous tasting and tweaking of the filling before I finally made up the pie.
Judging by the ingredients, this pie should freeze well in slices too. We ate this hot initially but have discovered that it is at its best chilled.
I cooked our pie in our Halogen oven, Andrew for about an hour at 180c. Halogen ovens love foil – in fact I think that there might have been a secret tryst between foil companies and halogen oven manufacturers. I covered the pie with foil for the first half hour and then left it exposed so that the pie formed a perfect deep golden crust.
|Recipe for Fiona’s cheese and potato pie||
- 450g / 1 pound of shortcrust pastry – I used a premade pack
- 500g / 3 cups of floury potatoes – peeled and chopped into chunks
- 150g / 1 1/2 cups of strong mature cheddar cheese – grated
- 50g / 1/2 cup of Parmesan or xxx – grated
- 1 chunky continental onion/scallion/green onion or 5 traditional spring onions – sliced fine including the green stalks
- 20g / 1/2 a cup of racombole chopped. Or Welsh onion stalks or the green stalks of Egyptian walking onions or 30g of chives.
- 1 level teaspoon of garlic granules
- A decent dash of ground white pepper to taste
- 2 large eggs
- Boil the potatoes for 10-12 minutes until they are soft and cooked. Mash the potatoes or ideally put the potatoes through a ricer (this guarantees no lumps)
- Stir in the cheeses, continental onions, garlic granules, white pepper (don’t use black pepper as it will look nasty in the final pie) and racombole.
- Taste and season if necessary
- Beat the eggs and stir gently into the mixture- leave a little to brush over the surface of the pie
- Grease a 9 1/2 inch (24cm) pie dish well.
- Roll out about two thirds of the pastry on a floured board and line the pie dish including the rim
- Add the potato mixture
- Roll out the rest of the pastry and cover the pie, pressing the edges down well. Make two or three small slits in the centre of the pie. Brush the surface of the pie and place it in the oven at 200c/390f or 180c/350f fan or halogen oven for about an hour – check the pie after 45 minutes – the surface should be a golden brown.
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