Saturday, 20 November 2010

Fake and kidney pie

This morning we went to Stroud Farmers' Market which is held every Saturday in Stroud's Cornhill. It's always bustling with characters and brimming with fresh organic produce. We bought some lovely fresh sprouts, squash and other veggies. We also bought some individual vegan nut roasts from Mandy & Alan's Fab Food Company. All their stuff is vegetarian and they have quite a few vegan options so it's worth stopping by their stall on a Saturday if you're local to Stroud.

This was the Cashew Crunch nut roast, which I really enjoyed for my lunch today. I've also got a Thai one with water chestnuts, coconut milk and chilli waiting for me in the fridge for tomorrow. Yum.

On to the pie. This evening I wanted to roast the beautiful sprouts and squash from the Farmers' Market so I thought a traditional pie would be an appropriate main (sort of 'meat and two veg' type thing). The most traditional and famous British pie I can think of is Steak and Kidney pie. I don't know what that tastes like but it sounds revolting! I reckon a soya chunk and kidney bean pie is a much nicer idea.

Fake and kidney pie

Olive oil, to fry
2 red onions, chopped
1 tin of kidney beans (or your favourite beans)
1 tsp mixed dried herbs
1 cup TVP soya chunks
Boiling water, to cover

4 heaped tsp vegan gravy powder (I used Roasted Winter Vegetables Bisto)

Quick pastry (again)
2 cups plain flour
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/2 cup cold water
1 tsp baking powder
A pinch of salt

In a small to medium saucepan, Fry the chopped onion in the oil until transparent and then add the drained kidney beans. Stir in the mixed herbs and let it all cook for about 5 minutes to release the flavours from the herbs.

Put all the pastry ingredients together in a mixing bowl. Give it a good twirl around with a fork and it will quickly form pastry dough. Smoosh it into a ball and cut it in half for the base and lid of your pie.

Preheat oven to 180c.

Add the soya chunks and then add enough boiling water to hydrate them (enough to almost cover them although they float so you have to push them down a bit with a spoon to judge it!) Let them cook for about five minutes until they've gone soft.

Push one half of the pastry dough into a pie dish with your fingers until it lines the base and the sides. This pastry is very soft and malleable so I don't bother rolling it. There's also no need to grease the dish because the pastry is oily at this stage but it's perfect when it's cooked. Flatten out the other half of the pastry onto a sheet of cling film using your hand (or a rolling pin if you really want to) ready to use for the lid of your pie.

Add the gravy powder to your saucepan. This should thicken the water to gravy consistency. Add the filling to your pie and place the pastry lid on top by overturning your cling film and peeling it off - so much simpler than rolling out pastry on a floured worktop. Pierce the lid with a fork, brush with soya milk and bake for 20 minutes. 

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