In honor of the final season of Game of Thrones premiering last night, I made the pie that Arya served Walder Frey. Unfortunately, my local butcher ran out of Frey meat, so I used a combination of lamb and lamb sausage. I’m sure it tastes better than Frey son lol. I used the Food52 hot water crust recipe. The only slight change was that I used duck fat instead of lard or butter as their recipe indicated because I have duck fat at my disposal (also bought from my local butcher).
So why a hot water crust? I binged on all the seasons of The Great British Bake Off (holiday episodes included) when it first was available on Netflix. I am so addicted to that show. Season 7 and 9 are my favorites; all the contestants were really really talented in those seasons and I love the camaraderie even though they were all competing against each other. But I digress, my point is, GBBO has taught me a whole lot about baking, pastries, and cake. In particular, they spend a good amount of time making savory pastries. Savory pastries are not my specialities. The most I like to do is a chicken pot pie with store bought pie crust – always Trader Joe’s as their crust is really the best. I’m not very good at making my own pie crust as I tend to over work it and I’m not very good with rolling. But there’s no such thing as worrying about these things with hot water crust, as I learned on GBBO. It’s how hand pies were made back in the day in England because this crust can be molded by hand. If it was good enough back then, it’s good enough for me now!
As the name suggests, a hot water crust starts off with hot water and fats. Hot water crust is crisp and rich, crumbly rather than flaky when compared to a traditional pie crust. This is due to the nature of melting the fats. They’re distributed more evenly throughout the dough and creates a stronger, more uniform dough that can stand up on its own. Another perk of a hot water crust is that it can handle a wet filling as it’s not a delicate dough. One final reason I love a hot water crust is the flexibility that comes with construction. Even if the dough rips while lining the pie pan, the holes can be easily patched up with scrap dough!
all 1 B
Arya's Meat Pie
- Crust (from Food52)
- 2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
- 1/2 cup bread flour
- 3/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/3 cup water
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter
- 1/2 cup duck fat
- 6 cups butternut squash, diced
- 2 large russet potatoes, diced
- 1/2 pound lamb stew meat
- 1/2 pound lamb sausage (without casing)
- 1 bunch lacinato kale, chopped
- 1 large onion, diced
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons dijon mustard
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- Step 1 Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Step 2 In a large pan, heat up some oil over medium heat. Add onions and garlic and brown lightly, add butternut squash and potatoes and cook for about 10 minutes until squash is slightly softened.
- Step 3 Add lamb stew meat and lamb sausage and cook for about 5 minutes. Add kale and toss mixture.
- Step 4 Add dijon mustard, Worcestershire sauce, and salt and pepper to taste.
- Step 5 Set aside filling to cool.
- Step 6 In a large bowl, mix all dry crust ingredients.
- Step 7 In a medium pot, boil the water over medium heat. Then add butter and duck fat and stir until melted. Remove from heat.
- Step 8 Slowly pour in the liquid and mix into the flour until it forms a rough dough.
- Step 9 Knead the dough on a floured surface for 2-3 minutes until smooth.
- Step 10 While the dough is still warm, divide it into 2 pieces (one to line the tin, one to cover the pie). Between two sheets of parchment paper, roll out the dough and line the pie tin. Patch any holes as necessary.
- Step 11 Add filling to the crust. Top with second piece of dough, put in a vent hole and bake for 30-40 minutes until golden brown.