Nice Guy Pot Pie
This blog is about food that you can feel really proud about making and serving to friends, family or just yo self. This recipe brings me back to being a kid, at home in Montreal in deep winter at my family supper table with its warmth and welcome and reminds me that good food can transport and change us. This goes out to my mom who served up scratch meals to my large family every single night- that is next level puffy bird status.
2 ½ cups all purpose flour
1 teas salt
1 cup vegan margarine
6 tblsp ice water
⅓ cup brown or green lentils
5 button mushrooms- small dice
8 dried shiitake mushrooms- rehydrate and small dice
1 small onion- small dice
1 carrot- small dice
1 russet potato- medium dice
6 cups water
2 tblsp tamari (or soy sauce)
1 teas salt
1 tblsp arrowroot starch (or corn starch - if you must…)
Method - Preheat oven to 425°F
1. In a large mixing bowl combine flour and salt.
2. Cut butter into flour. This means incorporating the butter in a way that leaves small lumps of raw butter. These will cause separations in the dough and when baked will create a flaky crust.
3. Add ice water and mix sparingly until combined.
4. Wrap dough in cellophane and refrigerate for at least 20 minutes before use.
1. Bring 6 cups of water, 2 tblsp tamari and 1 teas salt to a boil and add dried mushrooms only- we need to rehydrate them and claim their delicious mushroom nectar for our gravy. Let simmer on low heat until liquid is reduced by half, turn off heat and cover with a lid for 20 minutes.
2. Drain and reserve mushroom liquid. This is your pot pie’s life source.
3. Put lentils on to cook. Nothing fancy- just cook them in salted water until tender, strain and set aside.
4. Get a large pot hot and add vegetable oil. In this order add your ingredients allowing each some time to cook before adding the next. You are layering the flavors. Button mushrooms, shiitake mushrooms, onion, carrot and finally potato.
5. Once all the veggies are snuggling in harmony add 1 cup of the 3 cups of mushroom nectar. Allow to fully reduce while stirring frequently. Add another cup and allow to reduce fully while stirring. Before adding the final cup stir 1 tblsp of arrowroot starch into it. Once you have added it reduce until you have a satisfactory gravy ratio.
6. Stir in your cooked lentils, remove from heat and allow to cool.
Combine and Bake
1. Fill your baking receptacle within a half inch of the top with pie filling- don’t want overflow.
2. Working quickly; roll out pie dough, cut down to desired shape and place over top of your baking dish. This part is personal preference- do you want it to hang over the edge or just fit over the filling- up to you. Makes slits in the top of the crust for steam to escape.
3. Bake for about 30 minutes or until crust is golden brown.
Successful pie crust is all about keeping the dough cold. You don’t want to let the fat melt before it gets in the oven. Handle it as little as possible and once you have topped your pies - place them in them in the freezer for 15 minutes before baking. Stirring the filling will help thicken the sauce. Russet potatoes are starchy and when you stir you agitate and release it- sort of like risotto technique.