Who ate all the pies?


The title of this post isn't strictly true!  As I explained in my previous post The Pig Of Happiness that as part of my New Years resolution I looking to cook more from scratch.  With this in mind I have created some mediterranean pies, which are healthy, veggies ones and easy to create. 

Now to make these pies you'll need the following:
Mediterranean Pies:
Makes 4
Prep: 40 Mins + Cooling & Chilling
Cook: 50 Mins
For the pastry:
225g Plain Flour
Pinch of salt
1 1/2 tbsp sesame seeds
1 1/2 tbsp poppy seeds
100g butter ( to keep calories down use low cal marg)
1 free-range egg yolk

 For the Filling:
2/3 x 290g jar char-grilled peppers in olive oil
8 x 1cm slices aubergine
100g vegetarian feta cheese, sliced (tesco do a lighter calorie version)
15g rocket leaves
4 x thick slives of large tomato on the vine
4 tbsp good quality pesto
1 avacado, stoned, peeled & sliced
1 free-range egg, beaten

1. To make the pastry, sift the flour & salt into a food processor and add the seasame seeds, oppy seeds & butter, blending until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.  Blend inthe egg yolk & 4-5 tbsp cold water to form a dough. Knead lightly on floured work surface.  Cut away one-third of the pastry and knead again.  Cover both pieces of pastry with cling film & chill for around 30 minutes.

2. To make the filling, drain the peppers thoroughly, reserving some of the oil for frying.  Heat 1 1/2 tbsp of oil in a frying pan or heat a griddle until hot & cook the aubergine slices on each side until golden.  Drain well on kitchen paer & allow to cool completely.

3. Divide the large pieces of pastry into 4 pieces. Knead each piece lightly & roll out on a floured work surface to around 16.5 cm circle, then use to line four 200ml large deep muffin tins, overlapping the edges slightly.

4. Blind back the base cases in the muffin tin, by placing cooking sheets in the bases and filling them with ceramic cooking beads. Butter the inside of the muffin tin to make sure the pies don't stick. Do this for around 30 mins on 190C. Take them out but keep the oven on.  Once this is done start filling the pies, start with the aubergines, then to with pepers, feta cheese, rocket, tomato, esto, avacado & the remaining aubergine.

5. Cut the remaining pastry into 4, knead & lightly roll out into 5mm-thick circles.  Brush the edgess of the pastry cases with water and the top with the pastry lids.  Pinch the edges together to seal, trim & flute.

6.  So the lids are on and pies stuffed, you're ready to go. Before the pies go in brush the pastry with the beaten egg & bake for 35-40mins at 190C, until golden.  Remove from heat, transfer to cooling rack and allow to cool. 

I'm aware the pies look extremely rustic but practice makes perfect!


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