Lord Manderly's Pork Pie

With this post you will surely realize how big of a nerd I really am. Have you heard of Game of Thrones?? It’s a TV show on HBO based on George R.R. Martin’s (GRRM) series A Song of Ice and Fire. I started watching the show with my hubby, thinking it was going to be some lame fantasy series, but boy was I wrong! I devoured the 2 seasons available on HBO and in a period of three months read all five books. Well, you could say I’m hooked.

I instantly fell in love with the books and GRRM’s writing. Yes, he’s a great writer and I’m sure many other people can praise him better than me, but mostly for his food descriptions. That’s right, his food descriptions. This is a food blog isn’t it? Here’s a little taste:

“The food was plain, but very good; there were loaves of crusty bread still warm from the ovens, crocks of fresh-churned butter, honey from the septry’s hives, and a thick stew of crabs, mussels, and at least three different kinds of fish.  Septon Meribald and Ser Hyle drank the mead the brothers made, and pronounced it excellent, whilst she and Podrick contented themselves with more sweet cider.” (A Feast for Crows)

The more and more I read I kept thinking, “Wouldn’t it be great if someone went through all the books and actually took the time to make the food?? Someone actually has!! The girls at The Inn at the Crossroads , where you will find many well researched recipes based on the books. Seeing as this recipe has not been done by them, I decided to take it on myself:

” ….and lastly on three wedding pies, as wide across as wagon wheels, their flaky crusts stuffed to bursting with carrots, onions, turnips, mushrooms, and chunks of seasoned pork swimming in a savory brown gravy. Ramsey hacked off slices with his falchion and Wyman Manderly himself served….’The best pie you have ever tasted, my lords,’ the fat lord declared. ” ( A Dance with Dragons)

I went to the library and did my research, and found out some interesting facts about cooking in the middle ages, but I will not bore you with those. I did however, have to work on this recipe for a while, since I couldn’t get the pie to be “swimming in savory brown gravy” without turning the crust into a soggy mess. After several tries I settled for serving a little brown gravy on the side.

There’s still some pie left in the fridge, so I will proceed to stuff myself in a Lord Manderly fashion and rewatch an episode of Game of Thrones :)

 
 
 
 

Lord Manderly’s Pork Pie

 Yield: 10 Servings

Time: from start to finish 6 hrs.

 Ingredients:

Pork shoulder, trimmed, cut into 1 ½ -inch pieces2 lb.
Pork or Chicken Broth (Stock)2 qt.
Garlic, cloves, crushed2 ea.
Lard, pork1 tbsp.
Onion, yellow, diced¾ cup
Carrot, peeled, diced¾ cup
Parsnip, peeled, diced¾ cup
Turnip, peeled, diced¾ cup
Mushrooms, button, quartered1 ½ cups
Apple, Granny-smith, peeled, diced1 cup
Sage, fresh3 sprigs
Coriander, ground1 pinch
Caraway, ground1 pinch
Cider Vinegar1.5 tbsp.
Egg, beaten1 ea.
Water1 tbsp.
Salt, kosherTo Taste
Black Pepper, groundTo Taste 

Short crust Pastry

Flour, all-purpose337g
Butter, cold, cut into cubes97g
Pork lard, cold60g
Salt, kosher2g
Water, cold126g

 Preparation:

1.       Place pork in a large heavy pot and add enough broth to cover it by 1 inch above. Add 2 garlic cloves, and 1 sprig of sage and bring to a boil. Turn heat down to a simmer and cook until pork is tender, about 2.5 to 3 hrs. Skim repeatedly. Once pork is tender, turn heat off and let cool in its own liquid for 20 min.

2.      For the dough: In a large bowl, combine flour and salt. Add butter and lard and use your hands to rub the butter and lard together until the mixture has the consistency of very course crumbs. Pour in half of the water and with the blade of a rubber spatula use a folding motion to mix. Pour in the rest of the water and repeat. Add more water if necessary.

3.      On a lightly floured surface, gently knead dough until it comes together. Cover in plastic wrap and set in a cool place or refrigerator while you prepare the filling.

4.      Remove pork from broth and mince, set aside. Add 2 sprigs of sage, caraway, and coriander to remaining broth, and bring to a simmer. Reduce liquid to make gravy, until you have 2 cups of broth left. Strain, and add cider vinegar, season to taste, and set aside.

5.      For the filling: Set a large sauté pan to medium-high heat. Add 1 tbsp. of lard. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until browned, about 7 min. Pour in onion and cook for 2 minutes. Add carrots, parsnips, turnips and apples and cook for 7 more minutes or until vegetables begin to soften, but are not completely cooked through.  Set aside.

6.      In a large bowl combine pork, vegetables, and 3/4 cup of reduced broth (gravy). Mix and season to taste.

7.       Preheat oven to 375F and place a sheet pan on middle rack.

8.      Remove dough from fridge and cut in half. On a lightly floured surface, roll out half the dough until 1/4 in. thick circle. Transfer to an 8-inch pie plate and line bottom and sides. Place filling in pie plate. Roll out remaining dough into a 1/4 in. thick circle and place over filling. Trim edges and crimp to seal.

9.      Cut a ¼ in. hole in the center of pie pastry and whatever other design you wish. Whisk together egg and 1 tbsp. of water and brush dough.

10.  Place pie on top of sheet pan and bake for 30min at 375F. Reduce heat to 350F and cook for 40-60 min. more or until the pie is golden brown.

11.    Remove pie from oven and let cool for 30 min.  Add ½ cup of remaining gravy to the pie through the hole. Do this gradually, waiting for the broth to distribute through the pie before adding more liquid.

12.   Let pie cool completely.

Chef’s Notes:

Serve with remaining gravy on the side. Pie is actually better the longer you wait for it to cool. Wait at least 3 hrs. before cutting it.

 

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