Sunday 21 April 2013

Pies – do they bake well in Bakewell?

Bakewell Tart Shop Traditional Steak Pie Review

Well, we’ve all had a Bakewell Tart, but what about a Bakewell Pie? Does a pie baked well in Bakewell taste well good as well? To find out, I’ve travelled to Bakewell in the Peak District, Derbyshire. But I’m not on the look out for a tart, no, for a tart is not totally and wholly encased in pastry. Put some pastry on the top of a Bakewell tart and I might be interested, but today is all about the pies only please.
pies bakewell
Pies only please, at the Bakewell Tart
I spot a little outfit called ‘The Bakewell Tart Shop’ that proudly proclaims it sells “Award Winning Pies.” What award exactly is anyone’s guess – perhaps it was a British Pie Award? Anyway, regardless of which award they’ve won, any shop that calls it’s pies ‘award winning’ must be pretty proud of their pies, and so I want to try them. There’s a sign on the wall that mentions something about Dales Pies – so these pies could be Dales Pies although I can't find any on their website that look similar. I ask the shopkeeper behind the counter whether there was any specific pie that was particularly ‘award winning’, and she tells me that the steak pie is probably their best seller. So that’s it, decision made, I plump for one ‘traditional steak pie’ that comes warmed at £2.59. Oh dear, error, that was silly. I want the pie as a take-away, and so for it to be warmed they’re going to have to microwave it. As any pie aficionado knows, you should never microwave a pie (unless it’s a specifically microwaveable pie such as Pukka Pies 4 Minute Pie). Still, too late, the pie in the microwave and I am going to have to live with my mistake.
steak pie picture bakewell
Microwavey goodness
Large chunks of steak
This is the pie in question. It’s definitely a pie, and not a tart. Before it went in the microwave, the pastry had a bit of a matt-finish to it, but after the microwave-job the pastry is glistening and looks a bit greasy. There’s no crispness to the pastry anymore – it’s just a bit flabby and rubbery. I’m fairly sure that’s the fault of the microwave, however – and that’s why you should never microwave a pie.

Still, how is the pie itself? The steak is quite nice, and you get some good sized chunks with no gristle or fat. It’s not too chewy either. There is a favourable amount of nice tasting gravy too, which fills the pie to nearly its full capacity. However, when you’ve been around the pie eating block for a while, some simple steak and gravy doesn’t really cut the mustard anymore. There wasn’t any excitement here. It was a simple steak pie. Too simple for me. It tasted very pleasant, was cheap for a hot pie, and was comforting, but had no pizazz or boom. The pastry was also fairly standard pie pastry. Nothing wrong with that, but I like to see crimping, I like to see innovative shapes, I like to see that some fun has been had constructing that pie.

Bakewell Tart Shop Traditional Steak Pie
Score: 5.39/7

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