Spiced Vegetable and Bean Pie
Spiced Vegetable and Bean Pie Instead of Turkey – Cheaper and Great for the Veggies!
This is a perfect veggie alternative for the Christmas table whether you’re all vegetarians or you’ve got some who won’t be eating the turkey. You can prepare everything the day before. Warm the filling and when you’ve taken the bird out of the oven to rest put in your individual pies and they’ll be ready by the time you’ve finished the gravy, carved the turkey and served up the vegetables.
Unless you love doing it, making pastry can be a chore and a disaster, so why bother when the ready-made frozen stuff is so good. If you’re making a large pie you’ll need a pie funnel in the middle to stop the pastry sinking, but I prefer to make these in individual soup bowls. For a festive touch, decorate each individual pie with a sprig of holly before serving.
As soon as you cut the pastry these smell fantastic and taste even better. I guarantee you’ll have the carnivores fighting for the leftovers.
For 4 individual pies you’ll need:
3 tbsp rapeseed oil – ideally organic, but absolutely GM-free
1 large leek, sliced
1 large onion, chopped
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1 swede, cubed
1 large parsnip, cubed
3 carrots, cubed
1 turnip, cubed
1 sweet potato, peeled and cubed
About 700ml (1 and a quarter pints) vegetable stock
1 x 400g can organic crushed tomatoes
3 tbsp tomato puree
400g frozen broad beans
2 bay leaves
half tsp ground cinnamon
Pinch of nutmeg
1 packet defrosted readymade puff pastry
In a large saucepan, heat the oil and sweat the leek, onion and garlic, stirring continuously, for 3 mins till transparent but not brown. Add the root vegetables to the pan and stir. Add the stock, crushed tomatoes, tomato puree, bay leaves and spices and bring to the boil. Cover and simmer for 45 mins. Add the frozen broad beans and continue to simmer until beans and vegetables are all tender – about 10-15 mins.
If you’re not making the pies straight away, allow to cool, cover and keep in the fridge. Reheat when required and make the pies as follows.
Pour into four individual ovenproof bowls. Heat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 5. Roll out the pastry, cut thin strips to put round the edge of the bowls, brush with water then add lids, pressing down with a fork to seal the edges. Using a sharp pointed knife make two 1” slits in the pie crust, brush with milk and bake till pastry is crisp and golden brown.
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