It was the afternoon of September 4, 2016 in Whistler, BC. Babs had just finished mountain biking and now we were in food-hunt mode. Babs mentioned he had seen a pie place earlier. I couldn’t quiiiite understand why I would want dessert in place of a meal… We wandered around Whistler Village, Babs had to show me this pie place.
I went for it.
By pie, Babs meant pie. Yknow what I mean? Meaty (or not), Aussie-style meat pie. And it did not disappoint. We found ourselves at Peaked Pies. I enjoyed a ‘chicken, mushroom, leek’ pot pie and a ‘beef curry’ pot pie loaded with all the fixings. Sure there were also dessert pies, but we agreed to save that for our next Whistler visit.
That meal was everything and more. Babs and I already knew we would have to try our hand at this pie life when we got home.
For my pot pie, I used ideas from different places. For the crust, I went to my friend L, who is a wonder in the kitchen. She told me her go-to for pie crusts was at the All Recipes site. Ok cool. She wasn’t done. She had tips for fool-proof fluffy, flaky crust: cube up that shortening with the flour and place it in the freezer for 10-15 beforehand. Alright got it. And! Don’t knead it, just gather it until it barely comes together. Gotcha. And! Ok.. that’s it.
I did my best to follow L’s instructions. Crust is never a simple thing to produce, but, like with most things, it does take practice.
Now for the filling! I had an idea that I wanted it flavourful and meat-less. I’m a huge fan of mushrooms and onions and… craaaap. I just looked at the page that I was going to link for the filling and realized I had missed an ingredient. Hm… yeah. Could be why my filling didn’t look like the photo…
I used the Easy Mushroom Sauce recipe from Cooktoria.
What sold me about this recipe was the fact that I had all of the ingredients at home (minus the sour cream which was the only ingredient I had to purchase and, yes, was the ingredient I forgot to use…). But I wanted a liiiittle more to my pie filling so I put more onion than it called for, added zucchini, broccoli and cauliflower. I wanted a hearty filling that wouldn’t miss the density of meat, and I also wanted less of a runny sauce because I wouldn’t be serving this over rice or potatoes.
One thing L mentioned to me about fillings was, whatever I did, to thicken with a roux to avoid clumps. Wellllll, I had planned to. But when I went to look up this roux business the time involved just didn’t appeal to me, so I thought, next time L. I promise.
The way this recipe thickened their sauce was by browning the flour and adding broth… and despite my vigorous whisking there were clumps. So I called in for back-up. Immersion blender. Ssh. I don’t know where I fall into the levels of cooking abominations but, hey, it did the trick.
My sour cream-less sauce was ready, I added the hearty (and well-spiced) veggies to the mix and it was ready to go!
In the end I was pretty pleased with the filling and I’m actually ok with not having added sour cream. I’ll be honest, the stuff is good but doesn’t always agree with me. I’ll just have to find something else to use it in…
Ideally, I would to make enough indivual sized pies to have a few different types frozen and ready to go. I think I’m heading in the right direction.
How did it taste? Well… Babs is the spice master in this house and he ate the pie and asked me what I used to spice it… so, it wasn’t just good. It was legit. Thanks cayenne pepper.