This is my second attempt at game pie. I do like a good pie, and living in northern England for the last decade and a half has heightened my appreciation greatly. 2010 will be the year I attempt my first home-made pork pie… so I keep telling myself… but this weekend as the temperature drops I’m looking for something more warming and homely.
My regular butcher’s been selling a good game mix recently (venison, pheasant & mallard), something which is just crying out to be pie-a-fied when the frost is building up outside.
The recipe’s pretty simple. To attribute fairly, I based this largely on a recipe on the BBC Food website. I used oyster instead of chestnut mushrooms as I picked up a bunch for next to nothing, and I used up the last of my dwindling stash of Christmas tangerines in place of the orange. I also sealed the meat more enthusiastically than I’d done last time, getting all that caramelised goodness off the pan when I deglazed to make the gravy, and made the filling a good 24hrs before adding the pastry top (because few things beat a stew or sauce next day). I’ll confess the pastry was pre-bought, so I spent more time on the typographical ornamentation. I guess it’s hard to kick my designer habit when I’m at home with a scalpel in my hand.
The final result was excellent: slow cooked filling and crispy light pastry and a glorious, all-pervasive aroma when I cut the whole thing open. Yum!