Hey Christmas is almost here! And because I want to post something on the sweeter side next week, this week I decided to cook savory pies. I know that Christmas is mainly for sweet things, but really, if you’re like me and you don’t eat them so much, sometimes it’s cool to have something also on the Christmas’ spirit that you can actually have for dinner.
Good Points about these pies : 1) They are super cute , 2) They taste super nice 3) They are rather cheap and 4) They are super easy to make! So let’s get started on our Christmas Cheesy Green Peas and Tomato Pies.
Unfortunately, I thought the assembling of these babies was gonna be a little bit faster. But I have to admit that most of the time was spent rolling the shortcrust dough, so if you are in a rush, just buy it already made. I have nothing against it really , just that for me making it is cheaper than buying it. Buy Hey! It’s Christmas so whatever works for you! Also as you will see in the pictures, I do have a bit of a problem with the cheese, which is, I love it! And so I use too much of it, and the result is that some did go overboard on the pies, and made them look a little bit more messy than I had in mind. But the cheese inside was worth it, so #noregrets !
The good thing is that this recipe is easy AF! But because you have to do two different sauces describing it might look a bit too long, so I’ll separate it by phases to make it look easier. Let me know if it works! So let’s get to it!
What you’ll need (makes 24 pies)
For the base (Shortcrust pastry)(or buy it already made)
- 250 g of all-purpose flour
- 125 g of unsalted butter
- 1 egg
- 2 tbsp of water
- 1 tsp of salt
For the filling
- 1 kg of frozen green peas
- 1 small onion
- 200 ml of heavy cream
- Salt and pepper
- 4 tbsp of olive oil
- 2 cans of diced tomatoes (800g)
- 3 cloves of garlic
- 2 tbsp of all-purpose flour (optional)
- 2 tbsp of butter
- salt and red-chili flakes
- 500 g of sliced Cheddar cheese or Kaşar (or another cheese that melts well)
- 1 egg for the egg-wash
And here’s how you do it:
Phase 1 – The shortcrust pastry
- You can get the directions for the pastry on my previous post The Portuguese Side. Or you can buy it ready made.
- Extend the pastry and cut 24 circles a bit bigger than the diameter of your muffin cups. And 24 smaller circles to cover just the top of the muffin cups. I used a cup for the larger circles and a glass for the smaller circles.
- Onto the smaller circles cut the shapes you wish to have on top of your pies. I used a cookie cutter on the shape of a tree, a Christmas ball decoration and a gingerbread man. Take the cut out part away, and keep the circle with the space in the middle.
- Spray the muffin tin with oil, or butter and flour it. And fill the muffin cups with the larger circles of pastry. Set it a side.
Phase 2- The Green Pea Filling
- In a pan, add 2 tbps of olive oil and the shopped onion. Let it cook until golden.
- Add the peas, and stir until all of the them are warmed up.
- Pass it to a bowl, and add the heavy cream, 1 tbsp of butter, salt and pepper. Blend it with a hand blender or your food processor. Don’t over do it, let it be just a little chunky. Set aside.
Phase 3- The tomato sauce
- To a small pan, add 2 tbsp of olive oil and the crushed garlic. Let it cook for around 2 minutes.
- Add the diced tomatoes, the salt and chili flakes and let it simmer until part of the water evaporates.
- When it’s boiling add 2 tbps of butter and the flour. This is just to thicken the sauce, and if you don’t want to do it, just pass this up. Let it cool.
Phase 4- The Assembly and Baking
- Into the muffin cups, make a layer with 1 tbsp of green pea puree, 1 tbsp of tomato sauce and 1 slice of cheese. It helps to fold the cheese into 4 little squares. Cover it with the smaller circles of the dough.
- Beat one egg and brush it to the top of the pies, so they get a yellow healthy glow when baked.
- To get the effect of the decorations I made, you alternate the order of the fillings to have different colors on top. So if you have a tree cut out on top, you would like to have the green pea puree on top. Same goes for the tomato sauce for the ball decoration, and the cheese for the star/gingerbread man.
- Bake for 25 minutes at 200 C.
- Take it out of the oven and Voila!!
I must admit that the Christmas spirit got to me a bit, and I went out to buy the tiny lights just to take these pictures. Still #noregrets. I guess my favorite thing about the holiday season is all the light decorations in the street. Even here in Istanbul we get some action. I hope you enjoy these pies as I did! I started to exercise a bit more so I could eat more pies, so there you go! They are really worth the shot!
Also on completely unrelated news, I just got my toefl exam scores and, as I got a good grade I’m super happy. I am planning to apply to college again for fall 2016 and that makes it one step is out of the way.
See you next week!