I am still plodding through my epic “to bake” list from Dan Lepard’s Short and Sweet. A couple of weeks ago, I mentioned there were still thirty-five recipes on the list. Well make that thirty-two now as I have ticked a couple off recently. I intended to blog about them all but unfortunately the last couple (a gruyere and saffron tart and some red onion rolls) were a little underwhelming. Me saying, “it was alright, nothing more, nothing less,” does not make for very exciting reading so I chose to spare you my indifference.
To be honest, I thought that this ham, egg and potato pie was heading for mediocrity too. To be fair, this was due to me not paying it my full attention rather than anything to do with Dan’s recipe. I was trying to make it in between watching “golden Wednesday” (whoop, whoop) at the Olympics and trying to understand the rules of the cycling time trial and why the leaders had to sit on sparkly thrones à la Posh and Becks.
Dan’s ham, egg and potato pie contains, well, ham, eggs and potatoes all wrapped in a cheesy pastry. Because I don’t have a proper pie dish, I decided to make my pie in a quiche tin which was a mistake. There was too much filling for the shallow tin and as I placed the pastry lid on top, all the filling splurged out and dribbled down the sides making it a bugger to remove from the tin later. It also ejected a whole lot more eggy filling all over the oven as it was cooking – suffice to say I’ve had better baking successes.
The proof, however, is obviously in the tasting and I was surprised by how delicious Dan’s pie was. Even the OH who inexplicably doesn’t like potatoes, loved this pie. As it is so simple, the key is to use very good ingredients. I have noticed something of a potato revolution here in South Africa over the last couple of months – previously a potato was just a potato but now we are getting all sorts of different varieties. I used some lovely waxy organic Nicola potatoes which were perfect for this dish. I also used some meaty kassler chops (smoked pork chops) for the ham – I would suggest that a smoked ham/gammon works really well here otherwise there is a danger the dish could veer towards the bland. Other additions I think would be delicious would be some cooked red onion or some sliced spring onions, a handful of peas and/or a spoonful of whole grain mustard in with the eggs.
As luck would have it, it appears that the theme for this month’s Tea Time Treats challenge (co-hosted by ‘Lavender and Lovage’ and ‘What Kate Baked‘) is “Picnic Pies” so I am making this pie my entry. If you fancy making the pie yourself, you can find a similar incarnation of the recipe on the Guardian website here.
This will probably be my last post for a couple of weeks as I am heading back to the UK for (in no particular order) some Olympics, shopping and the chance to go to the pub for the first time in two years. And to see friends and family of course See you on the other side.