Monday, 13 February 2017

Homity Pie

Homity Pie is a simple, homely, and nutritious bake just like a great big hug in pie form!  It is a vegetarian open pie packed with potatoes, spring onions, leeks, and cheese, and is delicious served either with a green salad or a medley of your favourite vegetables.  

Homemade Homity Pie

The first time that Mr E & I came across Homity Pie, I seem to recall, was some three or four years ago whilst having lunch in a lovely vegetarian tea room / cafe in the market town of Skipton one chilly November day.   It was listed on the specials board, 'homity pie served with seasonal vegetables'.  Neither of us had heard of it, but after quizzing the waitress Mr E quickly decided that that was for him.

You see, Mr E loves his potatoes and Homity Pie is packed full of the humble potato.  They're certainly the star of the show.  But with a few other basic ingredients, of onions, cheese and parsley, this vegetarian open pie is transformed into a delicious and nutritious family feast.


Homity Pie Recipe

Having done a little reading about Homity Pie, it transpires that there are two schools of thought about the origins of it (source Wikipedia).  Some say it originates from Devon (calling it Devon Pie), where as others suggest it was a popular dish created by the land girls during the Second World War as a result of rationing.  Wherever the origins of Homity Pie lay, the romantic side of me likes to think of  'Homity' as meaning home or homely, especially as it's such a humble, yet nutritious, vegetarian pie.  It's so simple, homely, and nutritious, just like a great big hug in pie form!

Homemade Homity Pie

By all accounts Cranks, a vegetarian restaurant which was established in London in the early 1960's, popularised this frugal recipe and although we used the classic Cranks recipe as the starting point for our savoury bake, we added to the ingredients list ever so slightly.  Of course, happily, we're no longer rationed so it seemed a nice idea to slightly upgrade Homity Pie with the addition of one or two 'extras' which our grandparents back in the 1940's and 50's may have struggled to source.

Our Homity Pie consists of two types of potatoes, Anya and Charlotte, and spring onions in place of the usual white onion which we find can be a little strong.  As for the cheese we used two different types: a small amount of a mature cheddar, (after all only a small amount of mature cheese is needed to bring flavour to a dish), and some Parlick Fell, which is a hard goats' cheese and brings a certain amount of creaminess to a recipe.  The milk was replaced with cream.  Of course, though, if you fancy trying this hearty vegetarian pie you could use just one variety of potato and cheese if you prefer.

Homemade Homity Pie, a vegetarian hug in pie form

Despite the slight upgrade in ingredients, it's safe to say that this open crust pie is frugal.  It's nutritious too with the wealth of vitamins of minerals which are naturally found in potatoes and leeks, and the dairy products of cheese and cream.  The potatoes, having been cooked with their skins on, retained even more of their nutritional value than they would have had they been peeled.




So, here's how to make Homity Pie!






print recipe

Homity Pie
Homity Pie is a simple, homely, and nutritious bake just like a great big hug in pie form!  It is a vegetarian open pie packed with potatoes, spring onions, leeks, and cheese, and is delicious served either with a green salad or a medley of your favourite vegetables. 
Details
Hands on time: Cook time: Yield: 1 large pie, serves 6 - 8 people

Specific Equipment
    Large Deep Pie Dish, ours measured 22cm diameter x 5cm deep 

Ingredients
For the Pastry
  • 125g Plain Flour (white)
  • 125g Wholemeal Plain Flour + extra for for rolling out
  • 150g Butter, unsalted & chilled + extra for greasing
  • Pinch of Salt
  • 1 Egg, lightly beaten
For the Filling
  • 500g Potatoes (we used a mixture of Anya and Charlottes)
  • 125g Spring Onions
  • 1 Leek
  • 2 tbsp Vegetable / Sunflower Oil
  • 30g Butter, unsalted
  • 3 tbsp Double Cream
  • 40g Mature Cheddar Cheese
  • 85g Hard Sheeps' Cheese (we used Parlick Fell from Sainsburys)
  • 15g Fresh Parsley, chopped
  • Seasoning

Method
1. Make the pastry. Place the flours, pinch of salt and cubed chilled butter into a good sized bowl. Rub the butter into the flours between your thumb and finger tips, until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Make a well in the centre of the breadcrumbs and add the beaten egg. Using a rounded pallet knife, or similar, cut through the mixture to make a dough. You may need to add a little cold water or milk to fully bring the mixture together. Shape the pastry into a ball and flatten into a disc. Wrap in cling film and place into the fridge for at least 30 minutes to chill.2. Cook the potatoes. Clean the potatoes thoroughly (leaving the skin on). Cut into chunks or discs about 2cm cubed. Place into a steamer and cook until tender (see notes 'c' below), for about 15 - 20 minutes.  Test they are ready with a sharp knife.3. Prepare the ingredients. Whilst the potatoes are cooking prepare the other ingredients. Clean, top and tail the spring onions and cut into 1cm chunks. Wash the leek thoroughly and cut in half and then quarters length ways. Cut the lengths into 2cm strips. Chop the parsley. Grate the cheese. Mix the two cheeses together until roughly combined. 4. Cook the filling. Once the potatoes are cooked through, place the vegetable / sunflower oil into a large frying pan and set over a medium heat. Add the prepared leek. Cook gently until it is vibrant green and starting to soften. Stir regularly. Add the spring onions and cook for a further 2 or 3 minutes, continuing to stir regularly. Add the butter and allow it to melt into the vegetables. Add the cooked potatoes and stir through to combine. Once the butter has melted add the double cream and half of the cheese, stir again. Allow the cheese to melt and the double cream to start to thicken. Add the parsley.  Season to taste. Stir again. Turn off the heat and set aside to cool.5. Pre-heat the oven to 220℃ / 200℃ Fan / 425℉ / Gas 7.6. Roll out the pastry. Remove the pastry from the fridge. Dust the work surface with a little flour. Unwrap the pastry and set onto the floured surface. Dust the rolling pin with flour. Roll the pastry into a circle about 5mm thick. Hold the pie dish over the pastry to gauge if the pastry is large enough to line the dish. Roll out a little more as necessary.7. Line the pie dish.  Grease your pie dish with a little butter if it's not non stick or metal.  Use the rolling pin to gently lift the pastry and lay it gently over the pie dish. Gently ease the pastry into the pie dish.  Avoid stretching it. Use a sharp knife to trim away the excess from the rim.8. Fill the pie. Once the filling is completely cool spoon it into the lined pie dish. Aim to ensure there are no large pockets of air. Scatter the remaining cheese over the top of the filling. 9. Bake. Place the prepared pie into the centre of the oven and bake for 20 - 25 minutes until the pastry is cooked through and the cheese is starting to brown.10. Enjoy!  Serve either with salad or vegetables.
Notes:
a)  Replace the wholemeal flour with white if you prefer.  b)  You're likely to have a little pastry left over, you could use this to decorate the crust of the pie - perhaps with pastry leaves or a plait, for instance, or even make a few jam tarts.  c)  If you don't have a steamer to cook the potatoes improvise with a colander positioned over a pan a third full of water.  Use the pan's lid to keep the steam inside.  Alternatively boil the potatoes.   d)  Consider cooking extra potatoes with your meal the day before to reduce the energy and time to make Homity Pie.  e)  This pie could easily be made into individual sized portions making it easier to freeze for another day or package up in a lunch box.














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Homemade Homity Pie Recipe, a vegetarian hug in pie form




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This post has been shared with:

Meat Free Mondays hosted by Jacqueline at Tinned Tomatoes
Cook Once Eat Twice hosted by Corina over at Searching for Spice


One Potato, Tow Potato co-hosted by Helen at Family Friends Too and Michelle at Utterly Scrummy

Hijacked By Twins Link up your recipe of the week
Brilliant blog posts on HonestMum.com




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36 comments:

  1. Ah this is one of my all time favourite veggie pies, I think it may have been the first veggie pie I had ever eaten too and it was not called Homity Pie then, but it was.

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    1. Ooh I'm intrgued now to know what it was called when you first tried it Shaheen.
      Angela x

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  2. This pie sounds so delicious! I've never tried it and only heard of it last year when it appeared as one of the choices on my daughter's school dinner menu. I remember rushing to look up what it was as I felt quite ashamed of not knowing! I would certainly love to try it now! Your version looks so lovely and creamy - real comfort food. Thank you so much for sharing with #CookOnceEatTwice x

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    1. I have to admit I felt ashamed and a little embarassed when we didn't know what it was too Corina - but it's all about learning isn't it. We're so glad we asked what it was and then giving it a go, as as you say it's perfect comfort food particularly for those chilly days.
      Thanks for your lovely comment, and of course for hosting a great linky,
      Angela x

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  3. I adore Homity Pie. I first had it almost 30 years ago (goodness..... I feel old!) and since going GF have been making a de-glutened version. So yum! x

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    1. Haha, I know just what you mean, I feel the same when I mention time periods like that! We're just happy to have finally come across it, as it's so delicious as you say :-)
      Thanks for popping by and commenting,
      Angela x

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  4. It looks delicious. I use the potatoes with their skins on too, for nutritional values.

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    1. Thankyou Anca, the potato skins bring so much flavour as well don't they.
      Angela x

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  5. Hi Angela,your recipes always make me want to cook them immediately!This looks absolutely divine.Cheese,leeks and potatoes one of my utter faves.What a fantastic winter dish xx#CookBlogShare

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    1. Aw thank you Jenny :-) The pie was certainly welcome this past weekend - it was so chilly!
      Angela x

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  6. Oh my, this most certainly is a homely, comfort food pie, how delicious looking, I can't have dairy but I'm still going to give this a go with vegan substitutes

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    1. Thankyou Rebecca, it really is a great big hug in food form! If you make it I hope you enjoy it as much as we do Rebecca, and with all of the dairy alternatives on the market these days I'm sure you'll find it straightforward to make too.
      Thanks for popping by and commenting,
      Angela x

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  7. Ooooh yummy! This pie looks and sounds like the perfect meal for this time of year. Thank you for sharing with #CookBlogShare x

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    1. It was just what was needed lst weekend Kirsty!
      Angela x

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  8. Oh my - I know a little potato piggie in this house that would LOVE this pie with a vegan cheese swap! Definitely going to give it a go! x

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    1. Hahaha, well my potato piggie (hubby) loved it, so I hope your potato piggie likes it just as much :-) I thoroughly enjoyed it too and we both went back for seconds :-)
      Thanks for popping by Midgie, do let me know how you get on with it,
      Angela x

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  9. ooh yummy - looks perfect for this time of year!

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    1. Thankyou rebecca, it really is very yummy :-)
      Angela x

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  10. new pie on me that is for sure but I can well tell it would be delicious. This type of recipe brings to thought of mom and grandma and their tasty pies
    come see us at http://shopannies.blogspot.com

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    1. Ah, yes I know just what you mean Angie, my mum and grandma used to make some delicious pies too. Thanks for the lovely comment, I'll pop by soon,
      Angela x

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  11. I am not sure when I first encountered homity pie but I do remember places like cranks selling it and I regret now not eating it more - have tried making it and it is quite an easy recipe which I really liked and I wonder if it was the ancestor of the ubiquitous cheese and onion pastie

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    1. Ooh that's an interesting though Johanna - it could well have been inspired by the cheese and onion pastie or even pie couldn't it!
      Angela x

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  12. Great recipe! As I said in my FB message, I first discovered homity pie in the Cranks recipe book - but I had no idea about it's origins. That it was a product of WW2 rationing would not surprise me. It's funny, reading the ingredients you could think this pie was going to be a bit boring (especially as I used to make it with regular potatoes, cheddar and ordinary white onions), but I know from experience these ingredients work together to produce something much better than the sum of its parts. And I can only imagine your version takes it to the next level! Eb x

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    1. It does seem logical that it came about from the landgirls during the war doesn't it Eb - and perhaps even inspired by the cheese and onion pie like Johanna said. I completely agree, it does sound somewhat boring on the face of it, but as you say it's far from it. I love how you describe those ingredients producing something greater than the sum of its parts! Couldn't have put it better :-)
      Angela x

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  13. Ive never tried this before but I am going to now. As I write Im printing out the recipe. It looks delicious. Have also pinned if it tastes as good as it looks it would be wrong not to share it:)

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    1. Awe thankyou so much Jacqueline :-) I hope you enjoy it as much as we did :-)
      Angela x

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  14. Angela - my mouth is seriously watering now! I ALWAYS say I'm going to make recipes I comment on but rarely actually get around to doing it - I think I'm going to make this the exception. #CookBlogShare

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    1. :-) your mouth will really water Mandy if you get chance to try it!
      Thanks for your lovely comment,
      Angela x

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  15. Ooh homity pie. It's one of my all time favourites, yet I haven't made it for years. I first had it at Cranks in Devon, more years ago than I care to remember. Yours looks lovely and two types of cheese has got to be good. Have pinned to remind me it's time I made it again!

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    1. Two types of cheese is certainly a good thing Choclette. We've only come across it in relatively recent years, and absolitely love it. Hubby has even asked that I make some for a savoury charity bake!
      Angela x

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  16. Your Homity Pie looks delicious Angela. I like how you've used spring onions instead of onions and two types of cheese. Pinned fro later x

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    1. Aw thankyou Sarah, we personally much prefer spring onions to white or even red onions. The two types of cheese were lovely in it. The cheddar was just enough to give it a little flavour punch but the goat's cheese added to the lovely creaminess.
      Thanks for your lovely comment Sarah,
      Angela x

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  17. This looks delicious - perfect for a comforting family dinner. Thanks for linking with #onepotato two potato :-)

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  18. Yummy pie, and perfect for Meat Free Monday. I've pinned it to try soon.

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    1. Thankyou Gillian, it has meat free monday all over it doesn't it :-)
      Angela x

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