Sunday, May 10, 2009

Pumpkin Pie

Two Types of Pumpkin Pie

The last two dinners I have cooked I have incorporated the lovely and mouldable mashed pumpkin. I have been experimenting and trying out my new recipies on Daniel, the studious medical student who needs lots of nutritious energy even though he says he would prefer just meat pies for every meal.

I also used sweet potato because they are like pumpkin to me - similar enough to assimilate into dishes where pumpkin is unavailable, and sweet.

First I made chicken Pumpkin pies:
I sauteed onion and garlic in olive oil and a little butter, then seared chicken mince, added stock, dry white wine and lastly after simmering, added fresh oregano from the garden! (a little cornflour or plain flour can be added to thicken this sauce since it is for a pie).
I then added this mixture to two little pre-prepared pie pots that were lined with filo pastry.

I then added seasoned, mashed sweet potato and pumpkin to the top and sprinkled with pepper, salt and feta cheese. Bake!

Big Pumpkin Pie

Recently I bought a whole rump - and proceeded to butcher it in our kitchen - nicely producing some big lovely cuts of steak and some off cuts for stews and curries. I thought, brilliant! I will use some to make a big pumpkin pie. I used mashed pumpkin to create the pastry and stewed the beef in a nice slow sauce for the filling.

1 cup cooked brown rice
1 onion, diced
1 carrot, diced
1 stick celery, diced
2 cloves garlic
500g diced beef
2 cups beef stock
1/2 a bottle of nice dark beer
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 tomatoes, diced
fresh and dried herbs
Olive oil

Saute onion in olive oil, add chopped carrot, celery and garlic and cook till transparent. Set aside.

Flour beef chunks and sear in olive oil until browned, add the onion mix with the beef stock and bring to a simmer. Add tomato paste, tomatoes and season to taste. Add fresh and dried herbs - thyme and orgeano and rosemary. Add other optional pie vegetables (I added peas because some get mushy in the cooking process and some retain their shape - they are always good in pies). Top up with adequate water to cover ingredients. Simmer for 1 hour while preparing the dough, topping up with water when neccesary.

400g plain flour
250g mashed pumpkin
1 egg

Mix all together and knead well. Divide in 3rds. Roll out 2/3 and put in big greased pie dish. Bake for 10mins to crisp the base.

Pie Construction Method:
Add brown rice to the bottom - to catch the juices.
Add the beef stew.
Cover with remaining 1/3 pastry rolled out.

Bake for a while till brown.

Though Dan thought he was getting the sweet pumpkin pie for dinner....i.e. Dessert for dinner - he was annoyed! Niketh liked it though. 

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