Big Puff Pie

Jane Easton

Vegan big puf pie

A hearty and delicious pie – basically a stew with a pastry hat – that is fairly quick and easy to make because it uses ready-made puff pastry sheets and the pastry is baked in the oven while the filling cooks on the stove. Then you assemble it and serve – to loud applause, of course!

  1. Pie Filling:
  2. 2 tbsp olive oil
  3. 1 medium-large onion, chopped
  4. 1 clove garlic, crushed
  5. 200g/7oz mushrooms, chopped if medium or large, left whole if small button variety
  6. One of the protein options as below in Preparation
  7. 6 tsp vegan gravy granules (plain Bisto is fine) made up with 300g/12fl oz boiling water
  8. 1 tbsp porcini mushrooms, soaked in boiled water then chopped into small pieces with scissors. Reserve the soaking water and include it in the 300ml needed for the gravy – see above
  9. 1 tbsp Dijon mustard
  10. 1 tsp mixed dried herbs
  11. 1-2 tsp shoyu or tamari type soya sauce
  12. 2 tbsp sherry or red wine
  13. 100g/3oz frozen peas
  14. Black pepper (gravy granules and soya sauce should provide enough salt)
  15. Pie Crust:
  16. 1 pack Jus-Rol puff pastry sheet (sold fresh or frozen in most supermarkets) OR a
  17. pack of Jus-Rol solid puff pastry, rolled out by hand
  18. Oil spray or a little vegetable oil
  19. A little soya or other unsweetened plant milk (almond, coconut, hemp) to brush top of pastry

Serves 4-6

Choose from ONE of the four protein options below:

  • Tempeh, 225g pack. Steam for about 5 minutes then chop into cubes and fry in a little oil and drizzle with soya sauce
  • Frozen tofu, 225g pack or thereabouts. Freezing tofu gives it a more solid, chewy texture. Chop it into cubes then place in a plastic tub with an airtight lid in the freezer. Defrost before using and fry in hot oil until golden brown and drizzle with soya sauce
  • Seitan (wheat gluten). Yakso brand 350g jars from health food shops OR Companion brand plain gluten or veggie chicken, 300g tins from Oriental grocers – drain each of these. Any liquid can be incorporated into the pie’s gravy
  • TVP dried chunks, about 10-15, soaked in hot stock for 20-30 minutes until soft enough to cook.

  • If using tofu, chop it into about 16 cubes and freeze overnight. Remove it from the freezer a few hours before you make the pie.
  • If using tempeh, it can be chopped with a big sharp knife while frozen. Otherwise leave it to defrost in the fridge a few hours before it is needed. Prepare as above.
  • If using TVP chunks, soak them in hot stock for a few minutes while you prepare everything else. Drain and squeeze gently before adding to pie.
  • If using seitan/gluten, drain, reserve liquid and set aside until ready.
  • Pre-heat oven to 225°C/450°F/Gas Mark 7.
  • Heat olive oil in a medium-large saucepan.
  • Sauté (gently fry) onion and garlic until onion is translucent – about 5 minutes. Add mushrooms and cook for 3-4 minutes.
  • Add the protein option of choice and gently stir in with rest of vegetables to coat with oil.
  • Make the gravy as above then add the mustard, herbs, soya sauce and sherry/wine and mix in well.
  • Add the peas, porcini mushrooms, gravy mixture and all other ingredients to the pie filling (except the pastry and soya milk).
  • Stir carefully to mix in well, taste and season if necessary, then turn down heat and leave to simmer.
  • Meanwhile, choose an oven-proof dish (or individual oven-proof dishes) that will hold the pie filling.
  • Use its shape to cut out a pastry lid – or several small shapes if you are using individual pie containers. Lightly oil a non-stick baking sheet or tray and place the pastry lid(s) on it. If using several lids space them out on the baking tray.
  • Brush with a little soya or other plant milk and bake in the hot oven for approximately 20 minutes, or according to the packet instructions – the pastry should be well risen and golden brown.
  • Spoon the stew into dish or dishes, place the pastry lid(s) on top and serve immediately.

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