As I have vast amounts of left-over doughs of all kinds in the freezer, and the recipe called for a dairy product that seemed to be an Icelandic staple (and I couldn't quite find a good translation for what it was), I opted to defrost some of the shortcrust pastry and use that instead. What I was very pleased with was that I got to use my mandolin a lot and I managed to slice everything without any injuries!
shortcrust pastry for a 30 cm pie dish
1 egg 6 - 7 carrots
3 - 4 dark green courgettes
5 tbsp milk
salt, pepper and thyme
- Pre-heat the oven to 200 °C. Separate the egg white and yolk.
- Roll out the pastry to about 3 mm thickness, then transfer to a pie dish, making sure that it's well fitted into it and goes a little over the edges.
- Cover the edges with strips of aluminium foil, prick the bottom surface to prevent it from bubbling up, then bake until it goes golden brown and begins to look dry.
- Take out of the oven, remove the edge protection strips and brush the whole inside with egg white, making sure nothing is missed out. Then return to the oven for a couple of more minutes before taking out and allowing to cool completely. This will protect the crust from going soggy from the vegetables.
- Peel and wash the carrots. Then trim the edges off the courgettes and scrub and wash clean, but do not peel.
- Using the thin slice setting on a mandolin and being very careful, slice carrots and courgettes along their length. Start with the courgettes, to get the hang of it as they are softer and easier to cut.
- Starting from the outer edge, line alternating courgettes and carrots, with the slices standing up on their edge.
- Continue until the whole pie shell has been filled, making sure to fit in as much as possible.
- Lightly whisk together the eggs, milk, salt, pepper and thyme. If you feel the liquid is too little, add more milk and adjust the seasoning, then drizzle over the pie to make sure it gets everywhere between the carrots and courgettes.
- Bake for 45 minutes and serve.
Next time I'll make more of the liquid, though it was quite nice as it was. I also think aubergines could add some extra colour or perhaps using light green and yellow skinned courgettes.
As for the amounts of carrots and courgettes, I wasn't really sure how much I'd need, so I sliced quite a few more than was necessary. A couple of days later, I cut them in chunks and made ratatouille, as I had some peppers that needed using up as well.
I also recommend showing the pie to the guests before cutting it, for the full effect, though even the cut pieces do look rather nice.
My niece Lou actually asked to have some of this pie instead of the Beef Wellington and I'm quite pleased that she liked it. For the pie, I made the lovely cold white sauce and I also served with Dauphinoise potatoes. What I liked about it was that the vegetables had retained some of their crunch, though they were cooked. The original recipe also had bacon in it, but obviously I skipped it here.