Monday 1 May 2017

Potpourri ~ Meat Pies


Little phyllo or filo cups made up of a potpourri of meats, peppers, and more make a delicious appetiser on any dinner table. It does taste great with a glass of wine! 
Make it your choice of meat and enjoy the variations as best as you can. Here is my recipe to share.

tangy, subtly spiced minced meat, eggplant almost caponata, and peppadew red chillies

500 g/ 1.1 lb readymade, seasoned, fresh uncooked sausage, any meat of your choice, chicken, turkey, lamb, pork
2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
2 tbsp olive oil
2 long Japanese eggplants, chopped into small bits
1 teaspoon paprika powder
1 cup red wine

1 tbsp fresh mint, or any herb of your choice
2 tbsp honey
24 red pickled peppadew chillies chopped, +/4 cup of the pickling liquid from the jar
1 cup of red wine

12 sheets of Phyllo/ filo
2 tbsp salted butter, melted

In a pan, place all the sausage meat, crumbled, and the finely chopped garlic. Cook until golden brown. Keep aside. In the same pan, heat the olive oil until just hot and add the eggplants. Saute`until golden brown. Return the sausage meat to the pan and allow the eggplant and meat to mix well. Also, add the paprika powder and mix it in. Now add the red wine and bring it to a boil, allowing it to bubble until almost all the liquid is absorbed. Add the pickling liquid and the chopped peppers, then the honey, and mix until it all comes together. Add the fresh mint. Check for seasoning and add salt if needed. Most sausage meat has enough salt.

 Preheat the oven to 200C | 400 F
In two two-cup cake trays, butter all the cups and the tops of the trays. 
Now cut the phyllo or filo sheets in half. 
Working very quickly, roughly fold the phyllo/filo sheet and push it down the center, allowing each cup to free form. 
Brush each one with melted butter. 
Place them in the hot oven, reduce the temperature to 190 C |375 F and bake for 12 minutes until they are just golden brown but cooked through. 
Remove and check one shell to ensure it is cooked. Fill each one with a generous spoonful of the filling and serve immediately.

I wanted my cups to be crisp at the bottom before filling them. Remove each one, turn it upside down ( very carefully as they are delicate and brittle ) and return it to the oven for 3 minutes to see if the bottoms are golden brown. 
If you prefer not to use phyllo or filo, ready-to-bake puff pastry vol au vent shells are available to substitute. However, only 18 medium shells will be enough for this quantity. 

Most sausage meat has fat in it. You will not need any oil to start off with. However, if there is more than a teaspoon, remove it if possible. 
Pick your favourite seasoned sausage; some come with fennel, oregano, and other "spices". This will add to the flavours. 
The red peppers are sold in glass jars. They are little red peppers that come in a choice of mild, hot, or sweet. 
Any wine that is left over will work. If you prefer not to use wine, use chicken stock or any kind of fruit juice you may have at hand. 
Honey substitutes can be maple syrup and golden syrup. Although golden syrup may be a bit sweeter, you may wish to reduce the quantity and taste for the fine balance of choice.

My published cookbooks are available for sale through myself and on Amazon.

The World of Parsi Cooking: Food Across Borders is a 3 award winning book. It has been self published in July 2019 and will be going into its second print in 2022. 

The Art of Parsi Cooking; reviving an ancient cuisine was published in 2016 by Austin Macauley and continues to be available through amazon book depot book depository and from the publishers.

Photo courtesy Niloufer Mavalvala

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