Thursday, 14 May 2015

Vegetarian Pork Pies

This vegetarian Pork Pie recipe is a great meat free alternative.  They're delicious enjoyed either warm as a family meal or cold as part of a buffet, picnic or a filling packed lunch.   The hot water crust pastry is forgiving, robust and easy to work with. 

Vegetarian Pork Pie recipe

As a child, I loved pork pies.  I'll correct that, I loved the hot water crust pastry surrounding pork pies!  My poor mum exasperated as I ate the pastry, leaving the jelly and pork filling!  Such a wasteful child!

These days, with our household being vegetarian pork pies are something I never buy during our weekly shop, but with a few veggies and Quorn pieces we can enjoy a homemade meat free pork pie! 

How to make vegetarian pork pies

The pastry surrounding pork pies, as I'm sure you may know, is called hot water crust.  It's such a robust and forgiving pastry (not to mention delicious).  Although you don't need to handle it with kid gloves, as with some pastries, it does need to be shaped whilst it's still warm and so for that reason wait until you've received that important phone call before making the pastry!

Traditionally pork pies are made by 'hand-raising' them around a 'dolly', a cylindrical wooden block.  You may have seen home bakers on Great British Bake Off over the years struggling to release the pastry from the dolly.  To avoid that struggle the recipe for these vegetarian pork pies is definitely easier having been made and baked in a dariole mould.  I confess it's not the traditional method, but it's still delicious and certainly easier to do.

Vegetarian pork pies are great both warm as a familt meal or cold as part of a buffet, picnic or packed lunch

The filling itself is a mixture of Quorn pieces and vegetables, the Quorn bringing 'body' and protein whilst the veggies bring colour as well as extra flavour and nutrition. We used sautéed mushroom, sweetcorn, and a charred orange pepper but clearly there is a whole host of items you could use in your version of the vegetarian pork pie.

How to make vegetarian pork pies with hot water crust pastry


Fans of the traditional pork pie will know that the pies, once baked, have a liquid jelly poured into them through the circular hole in pastry crust.  That jelly is normally made with a gelatine, a meat based product, which we substituted for Dr Oetker's Vege Gel.  Vege gels are great, being flavour free they're useful in both savoury and sweet recipes (have you seen our Salted Caramel Pie with Chocolate Sauce or our Bilberry & White Chocolate Baked Cheesecake which both use vege gel?), the only draw back with them is that they set fairly quickly meaning that you do need to work swiftly.

Salted Caramel Pie with Chocolate Sauce

Mr E & I have made these little beauties a few times now.  And yes, they certainly are beauties - they tasted divine and the pastry was as scrummy as I remembered (even with the vegetarian modifications).  Interestingly the vege gel doesn't melt when the pies are reheated making them perfect to be enjoyed both warm as a meal with perhaps beans and potatoes or other vegetables, or cold as part of a buffet spread, as part of a picnic or as a filling packed lunch.

How to make Vegetarian Pork Pies


So, here's how to make Vegetarian Pork Pies.




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Vegetarian Pork Pies
This vegetarian Pork Pie recipe is a great meat free alternative.  They're delicious enjoyed either warm as a family meal or cold as part of a buffet, picnic or a filling packed lunch.   The hot water crust pastry is forgiving, robust and easy to work with. 

Details
Hands on time: about Bake time:     Yield: 4

Specific Equipment 
    4 Dariole Moulds - ours hold 160ml / 6 fl oz
Ingredients
For the Hot Water Crust Pastry
  • 165g Plain Flour
  • 33g Strong White Bread Flour
  • small pinch of Salt
  • 41g Butter, unsalted & chilled
  • 50g Trex or baking block
  • 83ml Boiling Water
For the vegetarian Pork Pie Filling
  • Vegetable / Sunflower Oil
  • 160g Quorn 'Chicken' Pieces
  • 3 - 4 Mushrooms, medium, cleaned & diced
  • 65g Sweetcorn, canned, drained
  • 1 Orange Pepper (see note a below)
  • Seasoning
  • 1 tsp Thyme Leaves, chopped
  • 1 Vegetable Oxo Cube
  • 1 Vegetarian Gel Sachet (we used Dr Oetkers)
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten, to glaze

Method
1. Prepare the greaseproof paper. Cut 4 long strips of greaseproof paper about 5mm wide. Cut each strip in half and position two in each dariole mould so that they cross in the base of the dariole mould and come up the sides of the mould. This will help remove the pies if necessary. Cut a circle of greaseproof the same size as the top of the dariole mould to act as a template for the pastry lid if you don't have a plain cookie cutter to the same diameter as the top of your dariole mould available. 2. Make the hot water crust pastry. Place the two flours, salt and butter into a large bowl. Dice the butter. Rub the butter into the flour between your thumb and finger tips until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Place the boiled water into a pan. Add the Trex. Set over a low heat on the hob to allow the fat to melt. Make a well in the breadcrumb mixture and pour the melted fat and water mixture in. Use a knife to cut through the mixture (it's hot) to create a dough. Once the mixture starts coming together use your hand to knead the dough for a minute or so until smooth.3. Divide the pastry. Divide the pastry into 5 roughly equal pieces (1 will be for the lids). Place one piece onto a lightly floured work surface and cover the other 4 with clingfilm to keep them warm.4. Line the dariole moulds. Partially roll out the piece of hot water crust pastry until you have a thick disc. Ease it into the mould. Use your thumbs to ease the pastry up the sides of the mould, turning the dariole mould as you do so. Bring the pastry up the side of the dariole mould until it is slightly above the lip of the container. Aim to ensure the pastry is roughly the same thickness all over. Patch the pastry if it breaks. Place into the fridge to chill. Repeat with the remaining 3 dariole moulds.5. Make the pastry lids. Roll out the final piece of pastry on a lightly floured work surface. Use a plain cookie cutter the same size as the top of the dariole moulds (or use the grease proof paper template & knife) to cut 4 discs from the pastry. Place the 'lids' onto a baking tray or large plate. Place in the fridge to chill.6. Start to make the filling. Place a little oil into a frying pan, set it over a gentle flame. Cook the quorn pieces for about 12 - 15 minutes until nicely coloured. Add the chopped mushrooms and continue cooking for a further 2-3 minutes. Tip into a bowl to cool. Add the sweetcorn, seasoning & thyme leaves. Mix together.7. Prepare the pepper. Char the pepper either with a cook's blowtorch or gas flame on the cooker. Do be careful doing this. Once charred wrap the pepper in cling film. When cooled unwrap the pepper and peel off the charred skin, rinse under a running tap. De-seed the pepper and chop the flesh. Add to the bowl and mix again. Allow the filling to cool completely.  Cut the pieces of Quorn 'meat' in half if they seem a little large. 8. Pre-heat the oven to 200c / Fan 190c / Gas 6.9. Fill the pastry cases. Remove the chilled pastry moulds from the fridge. Carefully fill the pies with the filling, trying not to leave any large air pockets. Avoid over filling the pies.10. Afix the lids.  Place the lids on top of the pies and carefully seal them by crimping the pastry with your thumb and two forefingers. With a sharp knife cut a small hole in the top of the lid. This will be where the stock is poured into the pie once cooked.11. Glaze the pastry lids. Using a pastry brush, paint the pastry lids with some of the beaten egg. Try not to get any egg on to the moulds, as this may 'glue' the pies to the mould & prevent them from turning out successfully.12. Bake. Place the dariole moulds on to a baking tray. Place into the centre of the oven and bake for about 40 minutes. Rotate the tray after 30 minutes.13. Remove from the oven. Once the pies are cooked through and the pastry is golden brown remove them from the oven. Place on a cooling tray. Allow to cool for a couple of minutes. Tip the moulds to remove the pies, use the greaseproof paper 'handles' if needed. Place directly on the cooling tray.14. Make the jelly. (These specific directions are to make with Dr Oetker's vege gel.  If using a different brand follow their directions aiming to make a jelly with half a pint of oxo gravy) Crumble your stock cube into a measuring jug. Add half a pint of boiling water. Stir to mix. Pour it into a pan. Add a little cold water to a cup. Sprinkle half of the contents of the Vege Gel sachet into the cold water. Stir to dissolve. Pour the mixture into the oxo gravy. Set over a medium heat on the hob. Allow to come to the boil. Pour the hot gel into the pies via the hole in the top of the pies. Do this carefully & slowly either with the help of a funnel or with a measuring jug with a spout. Allow it to settle before adding more if necessary. Be aware that Vege gel starts to set quite quickly. 15. Allow the jelly to set. Set the pies aside on a cooling rack to allow them to finish cooling and the stock to set before serving. This will take about 1.5 to 2 hours.16. Enjoy.  
Notes: a) If possible select a pepper with a good sized stalk - this will help you move the pepper around more easily whilst it is scorched to remove the skin.  b)  The pies can be rewarmed in the oven without the Dr Oetker's Vege gel re-melting.





 

 

 

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How to make vegetarian pork pies with hot water crust pastry, and a meat free filling.  They're perfect warm as part of a family meal or even cold for a picnic, buffet or filling packed lunch.

 

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This post has been shared with:

 Tinned Tomatoes 'Meat Free Mondays'.

 Cook Once Eat Twice hosted by Corina at Searching for Spice

Link up Hijacked By Twins Link up your recipe of the week
    


26 comments:

  1. Thanks for todays sample Angela, very more ish, a lovely thought. A great blog, have put a link from mine.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You're more than welcome Brian, just glad you enjoyed it. Thank you so much for placing the link for 'Only Crumbs Remain' on your site. Very much appreciated.
      Angela

      Delete
  2. Replies
    1. Aw thanks Kerry :) They really were yummy as well, very versatile.
      Thanks for reading Kerry.
      Angela x

      Delete
  3. This sounds really good! I've always struggled with making pastry - it terrifies me! I really need to suck it up and give it a go. I do really like the hot water crust too, the best bit right? I will have to try these! x

    Jasmin Charlotte

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Certainly is the best park of a pork pie - but these little vegetarian dudes are really yummy ( I would say that - but they are!) Be brave Jasmin - the pastry won't bite :) . Perhaps if your hands are naturally warm the hot water crust pastry would be good for you to try.
      Thanks for reading Jasmin.
      Angela x

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  4. This looks lovely, thanks for sharing this recipe with us! Great vegetarian idea.
    xo Kiki
    https://colormekiki.wordpress.com/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aw thanks Kiki, hope you'll give it a go x
      Angela x
      Only Crumbs Remain

      Delete
  5. Brilliant recipe thank you!
    Elisa x
    http://lemonandlimethyme.blogspot.co.uk

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Elisa. Hope you'll give it a whirl :)
      Angela x
      Only Crumbs Remain

      Delete
  6. What fabulous little pies and I love the colours too.I'm not vegetarian but still find the meat version a little unpleasant to eat-it's the meat jelly I think so these would suit me very well.Pinned!xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awe thankyou Jenny, I wasn't keen on the jelly part of the meat pies either.
      Angela x

      Delete
  7. These look fabulous and your photography is so good now it really makes you want to tuck in.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awe thankyou so much Jacqui, I'm really pleased with how much my photography has improved - but that said there is always room for improvement.
      Angela x

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  8. These look great Angela - I haven't tried hot water crust before so will have to follow your instructions closely.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thankyou Mandy, it's such an easy pastry and lovely to work with, do let me know if you give it a try :-D
      Angela x

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  9. These look brilliant! I LOVE them. And so clever - I'm not sure I've ever seen a vegetarian 'pork' pie, before. They would be perfect for picnics in the summer! Thanks for linking them up to #CookBlogShare. Eb x

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    Replies
    1. Aww thankyou Eb, they've been so delicious. I first made them almost 3 yrs ago (! how fast time flies!) and shared them with Mum & Dad who still speak of how much they enjoy them :-)
      Angela x

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  10. The look amazing, and you've crimped them so neatly!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aw thankyou Kat, I love a good crimped pie lol ;-D
      Angela x

      Delete
  11. These are such a fantastic idea Angela! The filling looks really tasty and the small size makes them perfect for individual portions. Thanks so much for sharing with #CookOnceEatTwice x

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    Replies
    1. Thankyou so much Corina, they've been so yummy - and as you say the perfect size for an individual portion :-)
      Angela x

      Delete
  12. These look fantastic! I'm not really a fan of quorn but I think one of these pies would convert me. As a child I used to eat the pastry and pork but leave the jelly - I'm still not a fan of it today! x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Aw thankyou Cat, we're huge fans of Quorn and enjoy usually a couple of times a week. :-)
      Angela x

      Delete
  13. These look absolutely amazing Angela. Commenting as BritMums Baking Round-up Editor. :)

    ReplyDelete

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