|pastry dough cut into rounds over the vegetables|
Pot pies go back to the time of the Romans. In England, meat of all sorts, like chicken, beef or game from the hunt, are main ingredients in pot pies. This dish is an old-world classic, usually made together with potatoes, vegetables and cream. Recipes for pot pie abound, each seemingly a little different than the others. Ottolenghi’s root vegetable pies recipe resonates with me: a spin on the old-fashion classic. I’ve found his recipe to be vegetables forward, no meat but tastes like there is, harmonious use of many spices (curry, caraway seeds, mustard seeds and cardamom) and remarkably comforting. Over the years, the recipes I’ve tried in his cookbooks always deliver and seldom disappoint, like a trusty old friend.
Lesser known facts about Ottolenghi are his pastry background and his training at Le Cordon Bleu. He was the pastry chef at Kensington Place restaurant in London before he opened the deli-style and high-end restaurants of his own. A few of his baked recipes are my favorites among favorites: apricot, walnut and levendar cake and membrillo and stilton quiche. I have never tasted anything so over-the-top delicious with the unusual mix of ingredients. A flavor bomb and sensory provoking.
|pastry dough on the top only|
Back to this recipe. I did not know there was another surprise in the making. This time it’s the pie crust. There are only three ingredients involved: flour, butter and sour cream. Elegant in its simplicity, and the uncommon use of sour cream. I have committed the ingredient weights in memory. It is one of the easiest pastry dough to work with. Easy to roll out, even the second or third time. Extendable and no tearing. I had fun cutting out the pastry for different shaped tops: small rounds, big rounds, rectangles. It’s light and flaky after baking. Making pastry dough has been my nemesis. An ongoing history of having it made and also failed. I struggle. This recipe is the best I’ve ever come across. A keeper for sure. There is nothing quite like it!
This dish is joining the IHCC’s potluck gathering this week. There will be plenty of interesting and exciting dishes to gawk over!