Friday 20 March 2015

Reci-Pie Review: Waitrose Black Pudding Pie

The Ship's Cook (aka @the_cookworm) is currently on a pie mission - to find the top rated pie recipes from our nations supermarket suggestions. It started with a tweet we were sent by @jimbolimbo9 suggesting we try two pork pastry recipes from the supermarket Morrisons and from this The Ship's Cook decided to select one reci-pie from each supermarket's website or magazine to make and rate. Today is the turn of Waitrose Black Pudding pie!

Check out all our Supermarket Pie Recipes rated to date by The Ship's Cook right here:

Morrisons - Pork and Cider  |  Tesco - Beef and Stilton  |  Waitrose - Black Pudding 

Here is a little-known fact about me: I absolutely LOVE black pudding. I love it so much that I have been known to order items from a restaurant menu that contain black pudding even though I don’t like the other ingredients. So when I spotted this black pudding pie recipe on the Waitrose website, I couldn’t resist making it the second instalment in my supermarket recipe series. 

The recipe:

I had mixed feelings about this recipe. I definitely liked the black pudding part, but one thing I wasn’t completely convinced by was the pastry (pretty important in a pie). Read on to find out more… 


This pie was a nice golden brown colour thanks to the egg yolk on top, although I’m not sure the lid was quite as brown and crispy as it could have been thanks to the twisted ‘top-knot’ which made the pastry quite thick and stodgy.

Taste-wise, the consistency of the filling in this pie is pretty good. Black pudding and pastry could be a very dry combination, but the addition of the stock and fruit makes it nice and moist, and a little bit saucy/gravyish.

Looks-wise, however, the consistency of this pie really isn’t very appealing. It’s just sort of…browny red and runny and a bit lumpy. It’s not too bad once it’s cooked but while I was preparing it I kept wondering whether this recipe had been a really bad choice.

 (See? That's not appetising at all!)

Based on the recipe alone, this pie should score highly for capacity – you use a fairly deep tin, pack the filling in tightly and then cover it with the pastry. If you follow the instructions, however, what you end up with loads of pastry on the top as part of the ‘top-knot’ which messes up the Crust:Filling ratio. I think you’d have better luck not using all the pastry for the lid.

This pie definitely isn’t chewy – the black pudding is cooked down into a sort of mushy puree so it’s nice and smooth. The pine nuts, pear and raisins add a nice interesting texture to stop it from being too smooth.

Not a bad pie for cheapness – there aren’t that many ingredients and even though you have to buy absolutely loads of black pudding, it’s pretty cheap. Depending on whether you use fancy stock or a stock cube, and whether you’ve got raisins and a pear hanging about in the cupboard, you can keep the costs low. You will look a bit odd buying it all though, if like me your local supermarket only sells black pudding in very small packets…

As a black pudding obsessive, this scores pretty highly for me. It’s definitely unusual, and the addition of the raisins, pear and pine nuts adds a nice texture and means the black pudding isn’t too overwhelming. I ignored the suggestion of serving the pie with salad and stuck with veg and gravy, which worked well. You do have to REALLY like black pudding though, as there’s a lot of it in this pie!

This pie looked lovely when I took it out of the tin, but a bit strange once I cut into it. The filling still looked quite unappetising and the ‘top-knot’ of pastry meant that I ended up with really thick, slightly undercooked pastry in the middle of my pie slices. I’m also not sure that puff pastry is best for the base of a pie – I think it needs a more solid base and then a puff pastry lid that isn’t so thick. We did eat some of the cold leftovers the next day and the pie sliced more easily and held its shape, but the weird lumpy pastry top still let it down. 

 Too much pastry in that top-knot, Waitrose!

The Ship's Cook

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