Monday 10 March 2014

Reci-pie Review: McSingh’s Scotch Pie

Well there we have it. British Pie week has come and gone, a LOT of pies have been eaten and almost as many #PiePledges have been fulfilled. As you might remember from my last post, my #PiePledge was to attempt hot water crust pastry for the first time – something I was a bit nervous about. Luckily I managed to overcome my pastry fears and bake a truly ginormous hot water crust pie, and it wasn’t as tricky as I’d expected!

The recipe:
For my hot water crust pastry debut I chose a recipe by Tony Singh called “McSingh’s Scotch Pie”. This recipe was featured on one of my favourite recent cookery programmes, The Incredible Spice Men, and it looked pretty tasty so I thought I’d give it a go. Although the pastry was a bit difficult to handle (I don’t think I let it cool down enough before trying to roll it out) the recipe was easy to follow and I thought the finished pie looked quite impressive:

The Seven Cs:

The lard in the pastry and the egg wash on top make this pie a beautiful colour. It was a lovely golden brown and, despite being in the oven for ages, didn’t burn at all.

It’s hard to score this pie for consistency because the texture was quite like a pork pie, meaning there wasn’t any gravy or sauce. However, the meat was still moist and the vegetables added some extra texture so I think I’d give this a good score.

This pie was full to bursting and the filling was packed very tightly. In fact I could barely fit the lid on, so it scores very highly for capacity. Even better, the pastry was quite thick so the Crust:Filling ratio was perfect.

The pastry was lovely – crunchy on the outside and just a little bit chewy on the inside. The meat was tender and the vegetables nice and soft with no chewy bits.  

Sadly this pie doesn’t score very well when it comes to cheapness. Even with the flour, lard and spices already in my kitchen, I think I spent around £12 on the ingredients – the lamb mince and vegetables are expensive. It’s an enormous pie so you get lots of servings, but I’m still not convinced it’s worth the cost.

I was really excited about this pie. I expected it to be a fancy, spicy version of that beloved classic the Scotch pie. While it was a little bit spicy, it just wasn’t as flavoursome as I’d hoped. It does score points for being quite unusual, but I’m just not sure it was as delicious as it could have been.

This pie scores full marks for condition. It looks brilliant and it slices perfectly without the filling falling out. You could definitely transport this to a friend’s house for dinner or wrap a slice up for your lunch and it would still look lovely by the time you wanted to eat it. 

The Ship's Cook

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