If you’re not a fan of handling raw meat then I wouldn’t advise taking this project on with little hands. Part of the fun is getting your hands into the very warm pastry and mixing up the meats with the herbs and spices. Luckily my two aren’t at all squeamish but be warned you may have to actively stop a toddler eating raw bacon…
You will need a deep 8″ cake tin, well greased.
For the pastry
- 600g plain flour
- 210g lard
- 225ml water
For the filling
- 500g lean pork mince
- 5 pork chops/ medallions chopped
- 250g smoked bacon, chopped
- 6-8 best quality pork sausages (again nicely chopped)
- Handful fresh sage
- Teaspoon nutmeg
- Beaten egg
- 3/4 pint chicken stock
- 1 pack powdered gelatin
So hot crust pastry is a proper treat and as it involves heating the lard and water, it’s well worth prepping the pastry before bringing the kids into the mix.
Preheat the oven to 170°C Gas Mark 3.
- In a large bowl, add all your meats, chopped sage and nutmeg and mix well (with hands if the feeling takes you) and set to one side.
- Pop the flour into a large bowl and make a well in the centre.
- In a saucepan, heat the water and lard gently until the fat has completely melted, then bring to the boil.
- Remove from the heat and pour into the flour whilst mixing to form a firm dough.
- Knead the dough with your adult hands (it will still be quite hot), until it becomes smooth and less scorching hot (Perfect time to get the kids involved).
- Pop about a quarter of the dough to one side for the lid of the pie.
- Roll out the remainder and press into the cake tin. This dough is quite forgiving so feel free to get little fingers in there and patch any thin areas. If your planning on adding a jelly layer when cool, then take extra care to ensure there are no holes in the pastry.
- Fill with the meat mixture, pressing down gently to fill the tin (the meat will shrink away from the sides during cooking).
- Roll out the remainder of the pastry and place on top of the meat to make a lid. Pinch the edges to seal and if you have any off cuts these are ideal for making little decorations for the top.
- Make a hole in the centre using a wooden spoon handle or similar, to allow the steam to escape when cooking.
- Bake for 90 minutes in the centre of the oven, remove and brush with the beaten egg before returning to the oven for a further 30 minutes.
- Remove from the oven and allow to cool completely before making the jelly.
- To make the jelly, make up 3/4 pint chicken stock with boiling water and mix in the packet of gelatine until dissolved. Pour carefully into the pie via the steam hole (if you happen to have a funnel now would be a brilliant time to use it).
- Pop into the fridge for at least 4 hours but ideally overnight for the jelly to set.
Enjoy sliced with a whack of salad to counteract the lard!