Pies (the meat kind I mean) could very easily be the national dish of New Zealand. I don’t know how true this statistic is, but on an average every New Zealander eats 17 pies a year. I don’t know who is eating our family’s share!!! I have never come across a vegetarian pie that looks good enough to make me want to try. So I have been on a quest to develop a vegetarian pie that is bursting with flavour and I think I have just the recipe for you.
This mushroom pie is so delicious and using dried as well as fresh mushrooms makes it yummy and flavourful. This is great as a family meal or you could do individual ones as a first course for a dinner party. I used store bought butter puff pastry (Edmonds) but you could just as easily make your own with a bit of planning.
750g butter puff pastry
5-10g dried mushrooms (like porcini)
125ml boiling water
1 leek, finely sliced into half moons
1 small carrot, finely diced
1 stick celery, finely diced
1 sprig thyme
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1 kg small mushrooms, finely diced
125ml dry white wine
1 tablespoon chopped flat leaf parsley
1 tablespoon plain flour
2 tablespoon butter for greasing the pie dish and some melted to brush over the top
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Lightly grease a 24 cm (5cm deep) pie dish.
Combine the pastry sheets and divide into two portions, with one slightly larger than the other, and roll into balls. Place the larger ball on a lightly floured surface and gently flatten it to form a rough circle, then roll it out to a 3-4mm thickness. You want it to be 6cm larger than the base of the tin. Carefully roll it over a rolling pin and use to line your pie dish, gently easing it into the corners using the flat of your knuckle. Roll out the smaller ball of pastry to form a lid about 2 cm larger than the tin and place on a floured tray. Cover both portions with a kitchen towel and rest in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes – this will prevent the pastry from shrinking in the oven. Use the offcuts to make leaves and set aside on a floured tray.
Rinse the dried mushrooms in warm water and place in a cup or bowl. Soak in the boiling water.
Heat a large heavy based saucepan over medium heat and melt the butter. Add the leeks and sauté for ten minutes. Then add the celery, carrot, thyme and garlic and cook for a further five minutes. Season with salt and pepper, then add the diced mushrooms and cook for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Strain the dried mushroom soaking liquid into the pan. Finely chop the mushrooms and add to the pan. Pour in the wine, then reduce the heat and simmer for 5-10 minutes until approximately 200ml of cooking liquid is left. Stir in the parsley, then taste and season as needed.
Blend the flour with a little of the cooking liquid in a small bowl to make a paste. Stir this into the mushroom mixture, then continue to cook for about 5 minutes or until the juices are thick and luscious. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.
Preheat oven to 220 degrees Celsius. Spoon the mushroom filling into the pastry case. Brush the pastry edges with water, then cover with the pastry lid, pressing the edges to seal. Trim with a sharp kitchen scissors and cut a small “V” in the middle to allow steam to escape. Place the leaves around the “V”. Lightly brush the top with melted butter.
Bake in the centre shelf of the oven for 40 minutes or until the pastry is golden and cooked through on the bottom.
Serve hot with salad or vegetables.