This hand raised pork pie is such an impressive centrepiece for any Christmas buffet table. The hot water crust pastry really melts in the mouth, and is much easier to make than you'd think! This irresistible pie is so much better than anything you can buy pre made - it's well worth the effort.
- 375g plain white flour
- 375g strong white flour
- 140g butter
- 175g lard
- 1 egg, for glazing
- 1kg pork shoulder, minced
- 500g pork belly, half minced and half chopped
- 250g smoked bacon lardons
- 1tsp ground nutmeg
- 1tbsp freshly chopped sage
- 1tbsp thyme leaves
- 3 gelatine leaves
- 350ml hot strong chicken stock
- a 20cm springform cake tin, well buttered, base and sides lined with baking parchment
- To make the pastry, mix together the flours and 2tsp salt in a large bowl, then make a well in the centre. Put the butter and lard into a small pan with 200ml water and gently melt. Turn up the heat and, when just bubbling, pour into the well and mix together with a flat-bladed knife.
- When you can handle it, knead the dough so it all comes together. Pull a piece big enough to make the lid with a little overlap and set aside, covered with clingfilm. Hot-water crust is tricky to roll into a big piece so roll it into a large disc, big enough to cover the base of the tin.
- Work the pastry up the sides using your knuckles to push it into the corners of the tin. You can work the pastry hard – it won’t make it tough. Push it over the sides to make a lip.
- Now simply mix all the filling ingredients together with plenty of salt and black pepper and pack it into the pastry case. Roll out the remaining pastry to make the lid. Brush the pastry edges in the tin with the beaten egg to help it stick. Put the pastry on top and pinch the edges together to seal.
- Make a small hole in the middle for a pie funnel if you have one, or a large piping nozzle works just as well. Brush the top of the pie with more beaten egg, decorate with any trimmings then glaze.
- Heat the oven to 200C. Bake for 1 hr 30 mins. Leave to cool completely before putting in the fridge.
- When the pie is cold, make the jelly. Soak the gelatine in cold water for 5-10 mins until soft. Squeeze out any excess water, then dissolve in the hot stock. Allow it to cool for 10 mins, then slowly pour it into the pie through the small hole (you could use a funnel or small jug) until full – you may not need all the stock. Chill the pie for a few hrs.
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