I have such fond memories of cracking that sweet crumbly golden crust and biting down for those rich nuggets of perfumed pork. For me, it's one thing that represents the best of old English cooking and it was just that the pork pie was the glorious subject of this post. Mum used to buy them in both individual (for taking to school in a Tupperware lunchbox) and family sizes, perfect for slicing thickly at home to pair up with beans and mustard, or wrapping in brown paper and taking along to the lake for a picnic. They formed a major part of my childhood diet, because I was hand-reared in the North West of England, home to some of the World's finest pork pies.
I now live in New York, a land blessed with some fine pies but they are of the fruit variety. My pangs for meat pies have gone unabated. Another Limey told me about Myers of Keswick, a fine fine Manhattan-based purveyor of all things British and the lad makes his own pies and pasties on the premises. But it's a bit out of the way for this Brooklyn resident, and I decided it was time to get the apron on, get my shit together and knock one up at home. I must admit, I had taken some inspiration from Blogjam's fine attempt who span up a fine example.
I didn't expect the bloody ingredients to cost $40, it may have been cheaper to take a taxi to Myers and buy a month's supply, but that wasn't the point. I wanted to test myself and see what I could manage. I followed this recipe and look at the results....
As you can see from the trail the jelly left, I had some pastry issues. I think it got a bit warm. I was difficult to roll out and line the pan, and removing the bugger from the pie pan caused great cracks to appear and I lost some of the juice, but not all. After a niht in the fridge, the pie 'healed itself' and I was able to slice him open and admire the meaty interior before taking a big bite. It was OK. Not like the pies I used to know, but this was a first run and I shall make some minor improvements to the recipe, the pastry and I'll line the pie pan with paper so I dont' have to tear it apart to remove it. It did form the basis of my diet for about a week. After that, I just couldn't eat any more of it. I was pied out. I put the last quarter on he pavement outside my house and within seconds it had been snaffled.