I love pies that have the treat of whole eggs hidden inside. This is a picnic classic and a slice would be good in a lunchbox too.
Serves 8 Bake 1½ hours
For the hot water crust pastry
100g lard, plus extra for greasing
450g plain flour
100g strong white bread flour
75g cold unsalted butter, cut into roughly 1cm dice
½ tsp salt
1 egg yolk, beaten, to glaze
For the filling
300g good-quality sausgemeat (or skinned butcher's sausages)
300g mince pork
150g cooked ham hock, cut into roughly 1.5cm pieces
2 eschalions (banana shallots), finely chopped
3 tbsp chopped parsley
4 hard boiled eggs, shelled
Salt and white pepper
1kg loaf tin (about 1ox20cm base measurement)
1. Heat your oven to 200°C/gas 6. Grease a 1kg loaf tin (measuring about 10 x 20cm across the base) with lard. then strip-line it with baking parchment (i.e. cut one long strip of parchment, the width of the tin, and place it in the tin so that there’s an overhang of parchment at each end, which will help you remove the pie later.
2. First make the filling. Put all the ingredients, except the hard-boiled eggs, into a large bowl, seasoning lightly. Mix together thoroughly (the easiest way to do this is with your hands). Cook a little nugget of the mixture in a frying pan and taste it to check the seasoning. Put the mix in the fridge while you make the pastry.
3. To make the pastry, combine the flours in a bowl, add the butter and rub in lightly with your fingertips. Heat the water, salt and lard in a saucepan until just boiling. Pour the mixture onto the flour and mix together with a wooden spoon. Once cool enough to handle, tip onto a lightly floured surface and knead to a smooth dough.
4. Working quickly (the pastry will become crumbly and more difficult to handle as it cools), roll out two-thirds of the pastry and use it to line the prepared tin, leaving the excess hanging over the edges.
5. Press half the meat filling into the pastry-lined tin. Take a thin slice off the top and bottom of each boiled egg (this helps them sit next to each other and makes slicing the pie easier), then place the eggs lengthways down the middle of the pie. Add the remaining meat filling and pat it down.
6. Brush the pastry lid with beaten egg and make a couple of steam holes in the centre. Arrange the pastry decorations on top of the pie and brush these with egg too.
7. Bake for 30 minutes then reduce the heat to 180°C/gas 4 and bake for a further hour. Leave to cool completely in the tin. To remove the pie, turn the tin on it’s side and use the parchment paper to slide out the pie. Serve in thick slices.
Taken from Paul Hollywood’s Pies & Puds, published by Bloomsbury
Photograph © Peter Cassidy