Inspiration

Ingredients
  • 600 ml (1 pint) milk
  • 200 g (7 oz) leeks, trimmed, thinly sliced, white and green parts kept separate
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 250 g (8 oz) gammon steak
  • 50 g (2 oz) butter
  • 50 g (2 oz) plain flour
  • 200 g (7 oz) cockles, defrosted if frozen
  • beaten egg, to glaze
  • salt and pepper
  • 375 g (12 oz) plain flour
  • 175 g (6 oz) mixed butter and white vegetable fat, diced
  • 4–4½ tablespoons cold water
  • salt and pepper
Directions

Pour the milk into a saucepan, add the white sliced leeks, bay leaves and salt and pepper, then bring to the boil. Set aside for 10 minutes. Grill the gammon steak on a foil-lined grill pan for 7–8 minutes, turning once, until cooked. Trim off the fat, then dice the meat.

Heat the butter in a saucepan, stir in the flour, cook for 1–2 minutes, then gradually mix in the strained milk. Bring to the boil, stirring until smooth. Discard the bay leaves, then return the white leeks to the sauce, add the green sliced leeks and cook gently for 2–3 minutes, stirring until the leeks are just cooked. Leave to cool.

Make the pastry according to the method on page 9. Wrap the dough in clingfilm and chill for 15 minutes.

Reserve one-third of the pastry, roll out the remainder thinly, then cut 6 × 15 cm (6 inch) circles. Press into buttered individual tart tins, 10 cm (4 inches) in diameter and 2.5 cm (1 inch) deep. Trim off the excess pastry and reknead and reroll the trimmings as needed.

Stir the cockles and gammon into the sauce, then spoon into the pastry bases. Brush the edges with egg. Roll out the reserved pastry and cut 12 cm (5 inch) circles for the lids. Press the pastry edges together and flute (see page 17), prick the top to let steam escape, then brush with beaten egg. Decorate (see page 17) and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

Bake the pies on a baking sheet in a preheated oven, 190°C (375°F), Gas Mark 5, for 30–35 minutes until golden brown. Serve with steamed baby carrots.

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