Serves 6 to 8
Pot pie is one of the quintessence comfort foods. This vegetarian and vegan version will certainly fill the bill for an old fashion family meal or a special occasion. Its success depends on two things, good gravy and good pastry. The pastry recipe I offer here is excellent and may be adapted to veggie or vegan use by the fat source you choose. Of course you won’t use lard. Vegetarians may choose to use butter and vegans, a non dairy substitute. Do not use oil.
1 recipe Perfect Pastry
Vegetarian Mushroom Gravy *
About 1 cup of pearl onions
About 2 cups small mushrooms
3 or 4 cups of assorted vegetables of choice **
1 package extra-firm tofu
About 1 cup peeled, cooked and crushed chestnuts, if available***
|Make your pastry and chill. Make the gravy and set aside to cool. Peel the onions and blanch in boiling water one minute only and immediately place in cold running water to stop the cooking. Drain well. Trim the stems off the mushrooms. If they are small leave whole, if large, cut in half or quarters. Blanch the vegetables if using fresh. If using frozen, just place in a colander and |
run hot water over them. Drain well. Cut the tofu into 1/2-inch cubes. Combine all ingredients except pastry in a bowl and mix well. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Place in a large baking dish that may be served from.
Preheat the oven to 550°f. Working on a lightly floured surface, roll the pastry to be about one-quarter inch thick. Cut to fit the top of your baking dish. Carefully lift onto the baking dish and crimp around the edges. Cut a small hole, (about one-half inch in diameter) in the center to allow steam to escape. Using the scraps of pastry, cut leaves to use as decoration on the top of your pie. Paint the surface of the pie with an egg beaten with one tablespoon of cold water. Arrange the pastry leaves in an attractive pattern and paint them as well. Place the pie in the center of the oven with a baking pan on the rack below to catch any drips. Bake at 550°f for five minutes, then reduce the heat to 350°f and continue to bake until the pastry is golden brown, about forty to forty-five minutes.
Extra pastry may be cut into strips, painted with the egg wash and sprinkled lightly with garlic salt, seasoning salt or various seeds, (poppy, sesame, caraway etc.) baked until golden browned and served with soup or used for delicious munching.
* Since you are putting mushrooms in the pot pie, leave out the mushrooms when you make the gravy.
** You may use fresh vegetables you have blanched first, or you may use a package of frozen veggies. Vegetables that work best are carrots, peas and green beans.
*** To prepare chestnuts, first, make a slit in the side of each one with a sharp knife, then place on a baking sheet and put in a 350°f oven until the skins begin to pop open. Remove from the oven and allow to cool until they may be handled. Do not allow them to become completely cold or they will be quite difficult to peel. Peel and then crush or chop them. You can find already prepared chestnuts in jars in some markets.