Rustic French Lentil Pie

1 Jul

A very short (I promise) rant to begin today:  why do non-vegans always exclaim that obviously non-animal derived products ‘are vegan!’  Someone once even asked me if I can eat potatoes.  Seriously people, use your brains for 30 seconds.  (This annoys me almost as much as people asking me if my chest-plate tattoo hurt.  Come on.)

But, onto the pie!

For the pastry you’ll need:

  • 1 1/2 cups plain flour (plus a bit more for kneading)
  • 3/4 cup super-cold Nuttelex
  • water

For the pie you’ll need:

  • 1 1/2 cups brown French lentils, cooked in slightly salted water
  • 1 leek (or 1/2 a leek, for those who are not as huge about the magical powers of leek as I am)
  • 1 medium brown onion
  • 2 small-medium carrots
  • 2 medium potatoes
  • 1 small broccoli
  • 3/4 cup of peas (either minted or not minted)
  • vegetable stock powder (or a crushed cube)
  • gravy mix (if desired, not essential!)

Pre-heat oven to 200 degrees C, and ‘butter’ (or oil) a pie dish.

For the pastry:

Combine the flour and Nuttelex in the food processor, using a plastic S blade.  You can do this in a bowl with your hands, if you like, by working the flour and Nuttelex through your fingers until it forms ‘crumbs’ of pastry dough.  Add the water a small splash at a time, either with short bursts in the food processor or kneading it in with your hands.  It’s ready to roll out when it has combined together and comes cleanly away from the side of the bowl.  Place it onto a floured bench and work it with your hand – but not too much – before you start to roll it out.  Remember to twist and flip your pastry when rolling:  when you flip it over to work the bench-down side, rotate the pastry 90 degrees (but, always in the same direction!)

When it’s rolled out, carefully place it into a well-‘buttered’ pie dish.  Make sure that you really push the corners in well, and make the sides even, gently push a few fork-holes into the bottom of the pie.  Push or cut off the excess and leave to the side (this will become the lid of the pie).  Line the inside of the pie with baking paper and beans or rice (you can keep this rice for future blind-baking, but it’s probably best not to eat it…) and bake for 15-20 minutes, until the pie base is looking almost cooked.

For the filling:

Finely chop up the leek and onion, and dice the carrots and potatoes, and chop up the broccoli florets (and stems, if you like them) into bite sized chunks.  Saute the leek and onion, and boil the carrot, potato and broccoli in a separate pot, until they are almost cooked then set aside.  If you have not just cooked your lentils, or if you’re using canned lentils, place them in a big pot to warm up, with a pinch of salt.  Once they are warm, add a pinch of vegetable stock powder, gravy mix (if desired) and stir around until the lentil mix is totally warmed though.  If it starts to look too dry, add a small amount of water – but be careful not to make it too soupy (otherwise the filling will just pour out when you cut into the pie).  Add all the vegetables and combine together.  Add salt, pepper, or more vegetable stock to taste.

Fill the pie case with the mix, and let it rest down while you roll out the lid of the pie.  Work the remaining pastry only until it is one uniform lump again, and roll out as above.  Cover the pie with the lid, and press the sides around the rim of the pie case.  Punch a few fork holes in the top, wipe over with some rice milk and bake until golden brown on top.

I like to pull the pie out of the tin for the last two or three minutes of baking – but it is certainly not a requirement.

And, hey presto – a wonderful, warm, winter pie!

(And, with the small off cuts of pastry from the lid: cut them into small bits, brush with a bit of Nuttelex, and sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon and bake until golden…  delicious with vanilla bean ice-cream!)

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2 Responses to “Rustic French Lentil Pie”

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Cinnamon ‘Cheesecake’ « The Thoughtful Kitchen - July 4, 2010

    […] use the same pastry as I use for everything.  The recipe is here.  When using the pastry for sweet things, feel free to add a teaspoon of vanilla essence, or a few […]

  2. Tofu Rolls and Raw Almond Chocolate Balls « The Thoughtful Kitchen - August 26, 2010

    […] have slightly modified my pastry recipe (found here) to suit my new eating habits.  The plain flour should be exchanged with wholemeal or whole wheat […]

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