Pie-makers are a blessing for the lazy, the busy and the pastry-challenged (moi).
Pie-making was usually reserved for cold winter days off from work where I felt like being adventurous and trying to attempt pastry and yummy fillings, usually with dire results.
Now, with some blessed frozen pastry, armed with a saucepan and some yummy ingredients, I’m rolling out pies like some kinda crazed Mrs Mac and I love that it is just so easy.
I don’t usually buy into the kitchen fads, you know, the things that are supposed to make life easier but end up stressing you out more by taking up space in the back of a kitchen cupboard. But the pie-maker is a must.
This recipe makes 6 pies. They store well in the fridge or freezer. My pie-maker makes 4 pies at a time.
2 tbsp olive oil
3 sheets frozen shortcrust or puff pastry (you’re supposed to use shortcrust for the base and puff for the top)
1/2 onion, chopped
1 tbsp minced garlic
1 tbsp minced/chopped red chilli
3 tbsp red curry paste
1 can brown lentils
1 cup frozen vegetables of your choice (I used cauliflower, peas, corn and broadbeans)- set them in a bowl 10 minutes prior to starting so they’re not straight out of the freezer.
1/2 can coconut cream
1/2 cup chicken stock (vegetable stock for vegetarians)
1 can crushed tomatoes
Salt and pepper to taste
- Drizzle olive oil in a frying pan. Cook onion, garlic and chilli for 2-3 minutes until onion is soft.
- Stir in curry paste and cook, stirring to dissolve for a further minute or so.
- Add the lentils and frozen vegetables and cook for a further few minutes.
- Add coconut cream, crushed tomatoes, stock and season before stirring well. Put the lid on the cook on med-high heat for approx 20 minutes, stirring occasionally until the sauce has thickened enough to scoop into your pies.
- If your sauce isn’t thickening as quickly as you would like, add 1 tbsp of cornflour dissolved in water and stir into your curry.
- When the curry mixture is ready and you’ve seasoned to taste, take off the heat and set aside.
- With the pastry cutter you would have received with your pie-maker (or if not using a pie-maker, just a regular pastry cutter), cut out 6 circles of shortcrust pastry for the base of the pies. Then, cut 6 puff pastry circles out for the tops.
- Put the shortcrust bases into the pie-maker, fill with lentil curry filling. Put the puff pastry tops on and close the pie maker. Cook until the indicator signifies that the pie is ready (I usually leave my going a few minutes extra, until lovely and golden and crispy).
- If not using a pie-maker, use muffin trays to make your individual pies. Brush with egg wash prior to baking in the oven at 180C until golden.