Edward Lee’s Curry Pork Pies
For the Filling:
½ cup bacon, chopped
¾ lb. ground pork
¾ cup onions, chopped
¼ green bell pepper, diced
¼ cup carrots, diced
1 ½ Tbsp. fresh ginger, minced
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 ½ Tbsp. all-purpose flour
¾ cup chicken stock
2 tsp. curry powder
2 tsp. soy sauce
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
For the Pie crust:
10 Tbsp. chilled unsalted butter, cubed, plus softened butter to grease muffin tin
4 cups all-purpose flour
2 ½ tsp. kosher salt
2/3 cup cold vegetable shortening
8 to 10 Tbsp. ice water
1 large egg
1 Tbsp. vegetable oil
2 Tbsp. whole milk
• To make the filling: Heat a large cast-iron skillet over high heat. Add the bacon and cook for 3 minutes, until the bacon is lightly crisped and some of the fat has rendered out.
• Add the ground pork, onions, bell pepper, carrots, ginger and garlic and saute for 5 minutes, until the vegetables have started to soften and the pork is cooked through.
• Sprinkle the flour over the vegetables and pork and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the chicken stock, curry powder, soy sauce, salt and pepper, stir well, and cook for about 2 minutes. Has the liquid cooked off but the filling still looks moist? Good. Transfer it to a bowl and let cool in the refrigerator while you make the crust.
• Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Grease a 12-cup muffin tin with a little soft butter. Keep chilled in the refrigerator until ready to use.
• To make the pie crust, measure the flour and salt into a bowl. Add the shortening and butter and, using a fork or your fingers, work them into the flour until you have a granular texture (like cornmeal). If the butter starts to soften, stop and chill the mixture in the refrigerator. Add the water gradually and work it in just until the mixture clumps together to form wet dough; don’t overwork the dough. Dust with a little extra flour and divide the dough in half. Shape into 2 disks, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill for 30 minutes before rolling out.
• Remove one disk of dough from the fridge and put it on a floured surface. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough to a 15-by-20-inch rectangle about 1/8-inch thick. Using a biscuit cutter or a glass jar, punch out 12 5-inch rounds of dough, rerolling scraps if necessary.
• Line the prepared muffin tin with the dough rounds. Make an egg wash by whisking the egg with the oil and milk in a small bowl. Brush the inside of each crust with some of the egg wash to seal it, reserving the remaining egg wash for the top crusts.
• Spoon about 2 tablespoons of the chilled filling into each pie crust.
• Roll out the second disk of dough on the floured surface about 1/8-inch thick. Using a slightly smaller biscuit cutter or a 3-inch ring mold, cut out 12 rounds. Drape a round over each pie and use your fingers to crimp the edges together.
• Brush the top with the reserved egg wash. Use a fork to poke holes, or a sharp paring knife to cut an X, in the top of each pie.
• Bake for 15 minutes, or until the pies are puffed and golden; you should see a little bit of the juices bubbling up through the holes. This will make you hungry, so take them out of the oven and let cool for 10 minutes before removing from the tins to prevent them form crumbling. Serve immediately.
Reprinted with permissions from Artisan Publishers