Intro: Pirate Pie
Pirate pie is a savory dinner pastry shaped to look like a pirate ship. This pie recipe can be adapted for a sweet dessert pie, like this apple pie-rate done like a pirate ship which I based my design from. Instead of a sweet pie, I wanted a hearty meat pie, and I thought it was an easy trick to complete the pirate scene and have a gravy sea, and a mashed potato island complete with golden treasure.
Making pirate pie isn't much different than making regular meat pies. A small baking loaf tins is bent to be the boat hull, and parchment paper is used to line the pan and allow easy removal. The small baking loaf tins were in a pack of 5 for $1, and parchment paper was 6 - A1 [8.5"x11"] sheets for $1.99.
This is an easy and fun twist on your classic meat pie recipe.
Ready to walk the plank, ye scurvy land lubber?
Step 1: Bend Loaf Pan Into Hull
Pinch the midpoint of one of the shorter edges and bow outwards. This will be the bow (front) of our boat.
Turn the boat over and work the underside of the bow, removing the rounded rectangular profile with a hydrodynamic shape of a privateer schooner.
I found that placing my thumb in the bottom of the hull I could form a uniform curve under each side of the bow.
Refine shape as desired.
Step 2: Lining the Boat
Parchment paper allows the dough to take the shape of the tin lining, but not get stuck on the sides. This will keep your boat looking perfect when it comes out of the boat pan.
My parchment paper came in large sheets, so I cut an A4 (8.5"x11") sheet size for each boat pan. After some trial and error I found an effective lining design. The parchment sheet is folded lengthwise is three sections. The middle dimension is the width of the widest part of the boat (the stern/back).
The boat pan length was transfered to the parchment and the top and bottom of the sheet were folded in. Unfold the parchment.
To the parchment to be inserted into the boat pan and not have too much bulk, some sections of the parchment can me cut and others can be removed. After folding, cuts were made along the lengthwise fold at the top, stopping at the bow fold, and making a chevron cut. This bottom of the sheet can be cut along the lengthwise fold to the bow fold. There are two sections where excess parchment can be removed.
This will give you a general shape for your boat pan. Since they are hand bent, each is going to be slightly different. This parchment template should easily fit inside the boat pan. Make minor adjustments or cuts as necessary. When you're comfortable with your parchment fit, remove the parchment, lightly grease the boat pan with butter and insert the parchment back into the pan.
The addition of butter here is to keep the parchment in place.
Step 3: Pastry Boat
You're going to need pastry dough.
If you're a DIY kinda person, here's how you can make your own pastry dough.
Maybe you're not up to making pastry dough from scratch. That's okay, most grocery stores that have a bakery will sell you their dough. Smaller local bakeries wight also be a source.
- Clean a large flat work area, and then lightly dust with flour.
- Roll out a segment of dough that is roughly twice as large as your boat pan, at about 3mm (1/8") thick.
- Gently lower the pastry into the parchment boat pan, make sure dough is pushed into all voids. Trim excess dough from pan edges, but keep a wide lip of dough for mounting the top (deck) later. Set dough trimmings aside.
- Fill pastry boat with delicious meat pie filling. No pie filling? See next step.
- Ball up the trimmings and roll out a new sheet of the same thickness for the boat top. Use another boat pan upside down as a guide on where to cut the top deck. Trim the excess, keeping a wide offset matching the dough lip on the pastry hull.
- Using small drops of water, moisten the edges of the pastry boat and place the pastry top on the hull. Gently press the edges together with your fingers. Then make another pass crimping the edges with the tines of a fork.
- Slits were made on the top deck to let steam escape when cooking, and notches were made in the gunwhales to give the ship some flair.
- Place on baking sheet and bake at 200°C (400°F) for 30 minutes until edges and top turn golden brown. If edges start to burn, wrap with aluminum foil and continue baking until top is golden brown.
Step 4: Pie Filling
- 2 large russet potatoes
- 1 large white or yellow onion
- 3 cloves garlic
- 5 mushrooms
- can of corn
- can of peas
- can of mixed beans
- 1kg ground beef
- pastry dough
- spices to taste
Potatoes were chopped into small cubes and parboiled for 5 minutes. Drain and set aside
Garlic and onion was diced and combined with chopped mushrooms in a pan over high heat. Sauté until onions are translucent. Remove from pan and set aside.
Brown ground meet in a pan over medium heat until completely cooked. Spice as desired. Remove from heat, strain and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl combine sautéed onions, garlic and mushrooms, parboiled potatoes, cooked meat, with any other ingredients you might want to add. I included corn, peas, and a fiesta of beans.
With your hands mush all ingredients together. Spice to taste.
Step 5: Embellishments (mast, Sail, and Flag)
Adding a sail and pirate flag is easy. Join barbeque skewers together and trim to size according to your pie boat, this will be the mast. A sail was cut from scrap paper and taped to the barbeque skewer mast.
A jolly roger flag was drawn and attached to the top of the mast. Stab the skewer mast into the pie and you're ready to set sail!
Step 6: Set Sail and Serve!
To complete the scene for my pirate pie I made a sea of gravy and a deserted island of mashed potatoes..hey, is that treasure I spy?
Have you made your own pirate pie? I want to see it!
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