Pies are just brilliant aren’t they? I love pastry and I’ve been trying over the last couple of years to have a go at making all the different kinds. I haven’t done hot water crust yet so I decided to try it and made this Leek, Cheese & Potato Pie. It’s a vegetarian pie so great for meat free mondays, catering for a crowd or for a family meal. Leek, cheese and potato is a great pie filling as it’s delicious, hearty and easy to flavour to your own taste.
I started by weighing out plain flour in a bowl.
Over a medium heat I melted together butter, Crisp n Dry, water and salt. I used Crisp n Dry because my boyfriend is a vegetarian and this is a vegetarian friendly recipe. You can of course replace this with lard.
As soon as the fat mixture came to a boil, I took it off the heat and poured it into the flour. I used a wooden spoon to combine the mixture until a dough formed. I’ve seen people use their hands to mix the dough, but frankly I find this a bit dangerous! I am pretty sensitive to heat, and a wooden spoon worked great, so there was no need to put my hands in. I covered the bowl with a clean tea towel and left it to cool down for an hour.
Once it was cool I lightly floured my work top and rolled it out into a rectangle. I then folded the dough into thirds, as above.
I rolled it out again and folded it again. Then put it in a dish, covered it with cling film and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes.
After the time was up I took it out and used two thirds of the dough to line the pin tin. I used a loose bottomed cake tin that was 21cm wide and 7.5cm deep, I brushed it with oil. I rolled the dough out onto a lightly floured surface, placed it in the tin and trimmed the edges. Then I covered it with cling film and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes.
While this was in the fridge I prepared the filling. I sliced potatoes thinly, and boiled them for about 5 minutes. I drained the potatoes and put them aside.
In a pan I cooked sliced up leeks along with garlic, butter and for about 5 minutes. Then set them aside to cool for 15 minutes.
For the sauce I mixed up double cream, lemon juice, grated extra mature cheddar, eggs and herbs and salt to taste. I used rosemary and parsley. You could add chives or pepper too.
I mixed the cooled leeks into the sauce.
I took the pie case out of the fridge and layered up the fillings, potato slices, then leek, potato, then leek, until it was full.
Then I rolled out the rest of the pastry to make the lid. I used a beaten egg to stick the lid around the edge to the base. I used my fingers to make a crimp pattern and cut two slits with a knife in the middle. Finally I brushed beaten egg all over the top.
I had too much filling to fill the pie so I made this extra pie with a lid made from the leftover pastry. I’ve reduced the amount of filling in the recipe card below to make just the one large pie.
The bigger Leek, Cheese & Potato Pie was an absolute beast and took an hour and a half on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 to bake. The smaller pie took around 45 minutes. If the pastry on top starts to catch, cover it with foil.
Now this Leek, Cheese & Potato Pie was massive! We ate the smaller Leek, Cheese & Potato Pie for dinner one night with some vegetables and gravy. Then started on the bigger Leek, Cheese & Potato Pie the next day… for both lunch and dinner! It was very delicious and it got the thumbs up from my boyfriend. He said it was one of his favourite things I had made him recently. I was pleased with how the pastry turned out too and hot water crust was much easier than I thought.
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Leek, Cheese & Potato Pie
Large pie filled with potato, leek and cheese
For the pastry
- 500 g Plain flour
- 90 g Butter
- 100 g Crisp n Dry or other vegetarian lard substitute
- 200 ml Water
- 1 tsp Salt
For the filling
- 2 Large Potatoes
- 3 Leeks
- 1 1/2 tbsp Oil
- 1 tbsp Butter
- 3 Garlic cloves
- 2 Eggs large
- 300 ml Double Cream
- 150 g Grated Mature Cheddar
- 1 tbsp Rosemary
- 1 tbsp Parsley
- 1 tbsp Lemon juice
- 1 Beaten egg for glazing
For the pastry, weigh out the plain flour in a bowl.
Over a medium heat, heat the butter, Crisp n Dry, water and salt. When it comes to a boil, take off the heat and pour into the flour.
Use a wooden spoon to combine the mixture until a dough forms.
Cover the bowl with a clean tea towel and leave to cool for an hour.
Lightly flour the work surface and roll out the dough into a rectangle. Fold the dough into thirds.
Roll it out again and fold into thirds again.
Put it in a dish, cover with cling film and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Roll out two thirds of the dough to line a 21cm wide and 7.5cm deep pin tin. Brush the tin with oil. Place the pastry in the tin and trim the edges. Cover with cling film and put in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Now prepare the filling. Slice the potatoes thinly, and boil them for about 5 minutes. Drain and set aside.
Slice the leeks and cook for 5 mins with the oil, garlic, butter and a sprinkle of salt. Set aside to cool for 15 minutes.
In a bowl mix the double cream, lemon juice, cheddar, the eggs and herbs.
Mix the cooled leeks into the sauce.
Take the pie case out of the fridge and layer up the fillings, potato slices, then leek, potato, then leek, until it's full.
Roll out the rest of the pastry to make the lid. Beat the remaining egg and brush it around the edge to stick the lid to the base. Make a crimp pattern with your fingers and cut two slits with a knife in the middle. Brush beaten egg all over the top.
Bake on 180C/350F/Gas Mark 4 for an hour and a half. If the pastry on top starts to catch, cover it with foil.
Pastry recipe slightly adapted from Gourmet Dough. Filling recipe slightly adapted from Pie by Dean Brettschneider.