The health police are going to hate me – half a pack of lard has been used in the kitchen. About as non-healthy as you can get but it lifts pastry to something else! Most went into the pastry for this Game Pie, the rest, mixed half-and-half with butter, for an Apple Pie.Two pies for Waiter There’s Something…, tomorrow the apple pie, but here a mix of game packed into a loaf tin and encased by the most delicious pastry. Both recipes (for the pastry and the pie itself were adapted from The Big Food And Drink Book (published 1993 from the old BBC Food and Drink program). The mixed pack of game was on offer at Waitrose – a bunch of scraggy looking mallard, pheasant, pigeon and partridge which was tossed into an onion sauce with a chopped carrot plus a big pinch of mixed herbs. After cooking served warm with a little of my home-made Sloe Jam.
Place meat in a saucepan and cover with water and bay leaf. Bring to the boil and simmer for 30 minutes removing any scum that rises to the surface. Fry onion until soft. Add carrot and continue cooking for a minute or two. Mix in the flour and enough stock (from the simmering meat) to make a smooth sauce. Mix in herbs and a bay leaf.
For the pastry melt the fat in the water with the salt. Bring to the boil and turn off heat. Dump in the flour and mix until a firm but soft paste is formed. Use while still warm and pliable.
Line a 1lb loaf tin with the pastry leaving enough to form a lid and, if feeling artistic, various decorations for the top (and something more exciting than my pitiful ball collection!).
Pack the meat and onion/carrot mixture into the lined tin. You could add a layer of mushrooms and/or red currant jelly on this before covering with a lid. Make slits in the top and decorate as desired. Brush with egg. Bake for about an hour at 190C. You might need to cover with tin foil to prevent the pastry browning too quickly.