One thing that you rarely get as a vegetarian is a decent pie. Sure a lot of people aren't huge fans of the humble meat pie (and the insane amount of fat enclosed in each little pastry parcel), but it's so Aussie, and can actually be quite delicious. When done well, of course. With the quality of veggie mince these days, pies are finally within our grasp.
I was asked recently by an ardent pie lover, who is also vegetarian, if I had a recipe for a traditional meat pie.
"Sure I do," I said.
"Really? with the gravy?", he said wistfully.
And I understood that feeling... when you've grown up with something (party pies for school lunches, anyone?), it can be hard to fully strike it from your menu for the rest. of. your. life.
Luckily for me, I am determined to reach as many omnivores as possible with my veggie food, so see this kind of memory re-creation as of great importance. I want a meat pie with tomato sauce, and I want it now! And you meat eaters want a meat pie without the golf-ball amount of fat with every serving (is that rumour even true?), so consider this a public service to all.
1 packet veggie mince (I used Quorn in this recipe)
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 carrot, chopped
1/2 cup each peas and corn
1 cup water (you may need more, depending on how thick you want your mince)
1 veggie beef stock cube
1 tablespoon flour or gravy powder
1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons tomato sauce
1 teaspoon mustard
3 potatoes, peeled and chopped
1/2 sweet potato, peeled and chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 cup milk
1 cup grated cheddar cheese
1. Preheat oven to 220C.
2. Put the potato and sweet potato in a saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and cook 15-20 minutes until soft. Drain, mash, and add butter and milk.
3. Saute the onion, carrot and garlic in a little oil until translucent. Add mince, peas and corn.
4. Dissolve stock cube in boiling water and add to the mince. Add all the sauces and cook over a low-medium heat for five minutes. Add the flour or gravy powder dissolved in a little water and adjust the consistency to your liking.
5. Spoon the mince into a casserole dish and top with the mashed potato. Cover with cheese and bake 15 minutes until cooked through and cheese is golden and bubbling.
6. You're welcome.