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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Silverbeet of my heart....

I'm shocking when it comes to planning meals, especially when it comes to using up bits and pieces that we already have in the fridge. It's not that I waste food, I cook things on a whim and it usually doesn't involve ANYTHING I have at home, J on the other hand is marvellous at using up left overs and creating something from nothing. 
There I was at work yesterday, making coffee and I see this man emerge from a car with a pile of silverbeet so big you could barely see him behind it. He was dropping off at the country women's association (CWA) which is right next door to the cafe. I waited a few moments and then RAN next door.... I'm going to make spinach pie for dinner! 
I love making my own pastry. But let's be honest...sometimes there are never enough hours in the day. It had been a long day and there was already a few sheets of ready rolled shortcrust in the freezer. If treated right, ready rolled pastry is a great alternative to making your own. I will however, also include a recipe for shortcrust in case you have time on your hands. 
The filling for the pie was super easy and super tasty, food doesn't have be complicated to taste amazing! 
I simply used my bunch of fresh silverbeet, some pine nuts for texture and some fresh ricotta, mixed it all up with a couple of eggs, and salt & pepper to season. 
I used to favourite pie dish to house the pie, yes....I am aware it's a 'cherry pie' dish, there is just something special about baking a pie in a classic dish, it's just the right height and the way it curves ensures that you always get a thin crunchy crust around the outside of the pie. (Which is MOST important) 
When I was living in melbourne, despite the fact I had to share a kitchen with the cafe I was managing, I collected an array of vintage kitchen items, including quite a few illustrated pie dishes, I had one for ever kind of pie, pecan, lemon meringue, pumpkin, and of course cherry. When we moved back to hobart, sadly a decision had to be made regarding the pie dishes, so I chose my favourite and gifted the others to pie loving homes. 
Make pie not war.... 

Silverbeet&ricotta pie

1 bunch fresh silverbeet
400g fresh ricotta (from the deli) 
1/2 c pine nuts (toasted) 
3 eggs 
Salt&pepper to taste 
2 sheets ready rolled shortcrust pastry
1qty home made shortcrust (see recipe below) 

While your pastry is chilling or defrosting, chop silverbeet roughly and submerge in a pot of boiling water, you want to just wilt it not cook it through. 
Drain and put into a mixing bowl with the eggs, ricotta, and pine nuts. Season to taste. 
When pastry is ready, brush pie dish with butter or spray with non stick spray oil. Line with one sheet of pastry, fill with silverbeet mixture and top with another sheet of pastry. Fork the rim to seal the edges, cut a small hole in the lid to let the steam out , brush with an egg glaze, and sprinkle with sesame seeds if desired. 
Bake for 20-30 mins at 200c or until golden in colour. 

Shortcrust pastry 
 2 cups (300g) plain flour   
 145g butter
  •  2–3 tablespoons iced water

Process the flour and butter in a food processor until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. While the motor is running, add enough iced water to form a smooth dough. Knead very lightly then wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. When ready to use, roll out on a lightly floured surface until 3mm (1/8 in) thick. Makes 350g (12 oz), which will line up to a 25cm (10 in) pie dish or tart tin.

1 comment:

  1. hey marina, i'm sorry, i thought i had left a comment on this! i'd certainly printed the recipe out :-) it looks so deliciously simple... and simply delicious! i really love silverbeet, and combining it with ricotta = heaven in a pie.