Last weekend, while enjoying yet another lazy night in, I decided to shake things up by making pies. Mini pies. Medieval-themed mini pies – shepherd’s pie, meat pie, and EEL PIE!
Here’s what you’ll need to make a mini pie feast of your own:
I started by making the shepherd’s pie and meat pie fillings. First, drop three pats of butter in a cast iron skillet. I don’t usually cook with butter but I wanted these little guys to be as authentic as possible.
Chop half an onion and toss it in the skillet. Then, portion the beef to ensure the sufficient amount. Toss that into the skillet and combine with garlic powder and thyme. I think they used that stuff back then, right? Turn the heat on low and cook it slowly.
Next, boil a small pot of water. Peel and cube the potato and add it to the boiling water. Once it’s mushy enough, mash it. Add some butter, milk, salt, and pepper. I used two potatoes so ST would have something to snack on while the pies baked.
Set aside the potatoes, clean the small pot, and boil some more water. Add a handful of frozen vegetables to the boiled water. This is how much I used:
Spoon half the beef into a bowl. Add a spoonful of mashed potatoes and mix – this is the meat pie filling.
Add the mixed veggies to the other beef portion – this will be the shepherd’s pie filling.
Next, I cut the pie crust. Side note: If your pie crust is frozen, thaw it well in advance. Because of my spontaneity, ST didn’t eat dinner until 11:30 pm. It took forever to thaw!
I used Trader Joe’s brand. This stuff is BUTTERY, you guys. I’d recommend using only half a crust and rolling it out thinly. I didn’t do this and the crust was so too thick, rich, and buttery. Basically, instantaneously artery-clogging. Very medieval though, I think.
I used a glass to cut the dough into little pie bottoms. I was able to cut 8 circles out of one crust. Then, I balled up the leftover dough, rolled it out, and cut 4 more. The bottom crust should be bigger than the top so use two different-sized cups to cut your circles.
I placed my bottoms into the muffin pan. There’s no need to grease the pan with butter. There’s so much butter in the dough the pies pop out easily.
Add a heaping spoonful of filling per pie…
Pop the tops on – crust for the meat pies and a dollop of mashed potatoes for the shepherd’s pies. I even rubbed a bit of butter on the pie tops but again, there is no need for additional butter. There is NEVER a need for additional butter, no matter what Paul Deen says.
I didn’t read the instructions and missed the part where I was supposed to make the bottom crusts separately for 9 minutes. I was worried they’d come out soggy so I popped four more little pie bottoms in and pre-baked them like the box told me to. Spoiler: Don’t worry about pre-baking. There was no difference between the ones that were pre-baked and ones that were not.
My mom bought me two packages of unagi after I mentioned I had a craving. She used to buy 3 for $10 but the Chinese market in Sunset Park sold a different brand for $8 each – yikes. My mom spoils me.
I used about half the eel and cut it up into four pieces.
I added two pieces of eel for each pie and topped it off with a pie crust.
After baking for 20 minutes at 450 degrees… Tada!
The unagi sauce was bubbling out of the little pie crust. Adorbs!
Success! ST finished every single one. Unfortunately, I didn’t like the eel pie very much. It could have been because it’s Japanese unagi. Or, it could have been the different brand. This brand tasted different for some reason and not in a good way.
Anyway, these guys definitely took care of my pie craving. I will definitely be serving them up at our Game of Thrones season finale party. I can also imagine making mini chicken pot pies for FB – these guys are the perfect size for little hands.
Next up – mini cherry pies!