Sunday, 25 January 2015

January's bake of the month


This is a quite a traditional northern bake, though I’m sure other counties will have something similar.

Like most traditional bakes there was no recipe for it. I remember asking my mam for it and said she ‘just made it’. Thankfully it only has a couple of ingredients so I was able to work out the quantities.


Whenever we see our friends from Nottingham there is always one question asked ‘will I be making any cornbeef pie.’

Chris had his first taste of it at one of our parties several years ago and has adored it ever since. If they’re coming up north then I have to make sure it’s somewhere on the menu (with lots left over for his doggy bag home) or if we visit them then I have to bring some with us.

I took the photos during Christmas so excuse the decorations....



 Cornbeef pie
Ingredients:
  • 12 oz plain or self raising flour (either will do for the pastry)
  • 6oz block margarine or butter
  • One onion (medium to large in size)
  • Two baking potatoes
  • Large tin of corned beef
  • Tomato sauce
  • Cold water

    Method:
    • Pre-heat oven 200º c/Gas Mk 6. Fan oven 180ºc.
    • You’ll need a large tin approx 13 inch by 8 inch (33cm by 20cm) - a brownie tin is perfect.
    • Make the pastry first as it has to chill in the fridge for at least half an hour. Using a food processor or your hands pulse/rub together the flour and margarine or butter until it looks like breadcrumbs.
    • Add enough cold water until the pastry forms a ball but isn’t sticky. I find when using a food processor I need less water than when I’m making it by hand. Start with a couple of tablespoons and gradually add a little more.
    • Once it’s come together in a ball wrap it in cling film and chill it for half an hour.
    • Peel and cut the potatoes into small chunks then boil them for about 10 minutes or until a knife goes through them easily.
    • While the potatoes are boiling peel and chop the onion into small pieces and roughly chop the cornbeef.
    • Once the potatoes are cooked, drain thoroughly then put them back into the pan.  Add the onion and cornbeef to the potatoes then using a potato masher, combine them together making sure there are no large bits of potatoes visible.
    • Add a good squirt of tomato sauce then give it another good mix. Have a taste to see if you need to add more tomato sauce.
    • Take two thirds of the chilled pastry (put the remaining third back into the fridge) and roll it out into a rectangle slightly larger than the tin you’re using.
    • Line the tin with the pastry, letting it overhang the edge slightly. Don’t worry if any holes appear as you can always patch it.
    • Add the cornbeef filling then dampen the edges of the pastry with a little water. Using the rest of the pastry again roll out a rectangle slightly larger than the tin you’re using.
    • Next lay the pastry over the filling, trimming away the excess pastry. To seal the edges either crimp a fancy edge or simply use a fork.
    • Brush the top of the pie with a little milk or a beaten egg then bake in the oven for about 45 minutes until the top is golden brown.

    It’s perfect eaten hot (with chips and a dash of tomato sauce) or cold (it’s great party food).

    It freezes really well so pop any left over’s in the freezer. Allow it to defrost completely then eat it cold or re-heat in the oven or microwave.

    If you find the pie has a soggy bottom remember this great tip for the next time. Sprinkle some semolina on the pastry base before you add the filling. You won’t taste the semolina as it melts into the filling.

    Have a great week.

    Gertie xx

    PS why not pop over to Handmade Monday to see what other fellow bloggers have been up to.

    Update:   Something I should have pointed out when I first published the post. Up north 'corned beef' is always known as 'cornbeef'. It was only after reading the lovely comments that I noticed I'd used the northern word for it. Hope you weren't too confused....

    20 comments:

    1. That sounds delicious Gertie, I am definitely going to be giving that a try soon, thanks for sharing

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      1. Please do, you won't be disappointed xx

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    2. My daughter has recently become acquainted with corn beef I shall have to pass on the recipe to her. Yours looks very tasty :)

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      1. I'm sure your daughter will love it xx

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    3. ooh never heard of that pie before, it does sound rather nice. A great tip about the semolina.

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      1. It's a staple food here in the north east. No bakery would dare not sell it.. xx

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    4. I miss corned beef. Not had it for a long time. My mum would always give it to us with a salad, but I remember when she had to go to hospital when I was a child my dad bought a tin and simply cut the block into chunks.

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      1. My mam also used to give us it in a salad. Now though I only buy it when I want to make pies, shame really xx

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    5. Taken me down memory lane, not had corned beef since camping with girl guides:)

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      1. Camp fires and corned beef - perfect !!! xx

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    6. This looks so so good. I am going to print the recipe and make one for dinner this week. Thanks for sharing such a great recipe.

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      1. I'd be really interested in knowing what you think of it xx

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    7. Looks and sounds delicious, love corned beef and not used enough in cooking, my favourite corned beef hash, yumm

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      1. We used to have corned beef hash too. It was always for some reason cooked under the grill, could never figure that one out... xx

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    8. Oooh yum, family recipes that have been handed down are the best aren't they :) x

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      1. My mam took all her recipes to her grave as she never wrote any of them down. She never possessed a cook book, it was all done from memory xx

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    9. Interesting having the pastry - can't imagine it like that at all! - we make cornbeef hash - fry onions and chopped cornbeef while potatoes are cooking then mash up the lot together. At this point it will still be hot if you're quick or you can pop it in the oven or under the grill for a short while to melt grated cheese sprinkled on the top!

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      1. My dad used to love corned beef hash. It was done similar to how you described it but the potatoes were sliced and cooked entirely under the grill.

        You'll have to try it in the pastry. It really is lovely xx

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    10. Corned beef is lovely, I haven't had a pie in ages, I don't often eat pastry. I love corned beef hash, I like mine with baked beans, I also like corned beef and branston pickle sandwiches.
      Jan x :)

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      1. We tend to only have it either at Christmas or when our friends from Nottingham come up. I like it with tomato sauce but our friend prefers it with brown sauce....

        Corned beef and pickle sandwiches sound yummy !!! xx

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