Happy British Pie Week – the perfect week in the culinary calendar to celebrate all things pastry, because after all, who doesn’t love a hearty pie? Here, Simon tells you how to make tasty lentil and squash pasties.
You will need:
For the rough puff pastry:
300g of plain wholemeal flour
A pinch of sea salt
150g chilled unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
For the filling:
1 tablespoon of rapeseed or olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 small celery stalk, finely chopped
1 small carrot, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
100ml white wine (optional)
100g green or brown lentils
300ml veg stock
1 bay leaf
A sprig of thyme, (optional)
250g butternut or other squash, chopped into 1cm chunks.
2 teaspoons of balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons of hot Dijon mustard
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 medium egg, lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon milk, for glazing
1. To make the pastry, mix the flour with the salt, then add the cubed butter and toss until the pieces are coated with flour. Add just enough iced water (8–10 tablespoons) to bring the mixture together into a fairly firm dough.
2. Shape the dough into a rectangle with your hands and, on a well- floured surface, roll it out in one direction, away from you, so you end up with a rectangle about 1cm thick. Fold the far third towards you, then fold the nearest third over that (rather like folding a business letter), so that you now have a rectangle made up of 3 equal layers.
3. Give the pastry a quarter-turn, then repeat the rolling, folding and turning process 5 more times.
4. Wrap the pastry in cling film and rest it in the fridge for about 30 minutes, or up to an hour.
5. For the filling, heat the oil in a saucepan, add the onion, celery, carrot, garlic and some salt and pepper and cook gently for 10–15 minutes, until soft. Add the wine, if you’re using it, and let it bubble away to nothing.
6. Add the lentils and stock, season well, then add the bay leaf and thyme, if using. Stir well, cover and simmer gently for about 10 minutes.
7. Add the squash and simmer for another 20 minutes, or until both lentils and squash are tender. If the filling looks a bit wet, you can either drain off some of the liquid and/or take out a couple of spoonfuls of the lentils, mash them, then stir them back in to thicken the sauce.
8. Stir in the balsamic vinegar and the mustard and check the seasoning. Leave to cool.
9. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured work surface to about 3mm thick. Using a plate or a cake tin as a template, cut out four 20cm circles; you might have to gather up the trimmings and re-roll them to get your fourth circle.
10. Spoon the filling on to one half of each circle. Brush the pastry edges with a little water, fold the other half of the pastry over the filling to form a half-moon shape and crimp well to seal.
11. Place the shaped pasties on a lightly oiled baking sheet and brush the tops with beaten egg. Bake in an oven preheated to 190°C for about 25 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown. Enjoy hot or cold!
If this has left you wanting more, take a look at our range of pastry classes here.