Mushroom and ale pie, ale and mushroom pie. Doesn’t it sound so, I don’t know, rustic? I mean I know I’ve been living in the UK for nine years now, but I still have these overstated fantasies of provincial England. You know, homemade bread, pie, jam tarts. Romantic, overstated and embellished non-existant England. Unless you live in my head, in which case all English people are buddies with rainbow coloured ponies who have hearts for eyes and frolic under always blue skies and sunshine day in and day out whilst I bake. PIES.
Yeah, I know, that sunshine and blue skies thing sort of takes it over the top. And everybody knows ponies only come in a maximum of five colours so Roy G. Biv just isn’t possible in this scenario.
This vegetarian mushroom and ale pie recipe makes enough to serve four, provided you’ve got some veggies on the side. Think typical here: peas (mushy or not) and potatoes. My preference? Roasted spuds and minted peas, topped with either a mushroom or red wine gravy. I love me a heap of puff pastry with a Sunday roast, the way the gravy soggifies (yes, that’s not officially a word*) part of the pastry while the rest stays cripsy and golden.
*in my head, anyway. I spend a lot of time there. Can you tell?
Mushroom and Ale Pie
- Preheat your oven for 180° C (just over 350° F).
- Fry the onion in a bit of oil for about five minutes, until they begin to brown. Add the fresh mushrooms, garlic, thyme, and coriander, stirring to ensure the mushrooms are coated with the oil. Cook for 3-4 minutes, or until the mushrooms have softened and cooked down a bit.
- Add the 475 ml ale, vinegar, soy sauce, Natex, nutritional yeast, dried mushrooms, salt, and bay leaf. Mix thoroughly, and leave to simmer over a medium heat for 10-15 minutes.
- Mix the cornflour with the remaining 2 tbsp of ale to a slurry, and slowly pour into the mushroom gravy whilst stirring. The sauce should thicken quite quickly. When it does, remove from the heat and set aside.
- Meanwhile, prepare the puff pastry. I used a solid 350g block and rolled it to fit, but feel free to use a pre rolled sheet (and you don’t have to use as much, either. I just like loads of pastry). Place the cooked mushroom mix into a roughtly 7 x 10 inch (18 x 25 cm) oven dish and cover with the pastry so the edges just overlap.
- Brush the pastry with a bit of soy milk and bake for about 45 minutes, or until the pastry turns a crispy golden colour.
- Serve hot with your vegetarian Sunday roast, kids!