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Andy Bates is known for his hearty street food. His modern twists on classic dishes are fuelled by his international travels and a passion for re-discovering and cooking great British food. As the gaffer of specialist food company ‘Eat My Pies’, Andy brings the best of British food back to the public, including classic tarts, pies, Scotch eggs and, of course, some tasty puddings.

Andy is a contributing chef for Food Network UK and has already had two successful series broadcast on the channel - Andy Bates Street Feasts and Andy Bates American Street Feasts. His latest series, Andy Bates Brazilian Street Feasts, launched in February 2014. All three series follow him as he travels across continents to explore the world of street food and find the stories and people behind the recipes. As a result, he has become a leading expert on street food, with regular appearances on the street food circuit. Andy, who lives by the quote "You should always finish on a little bit of pudding", has also written a cookbook offering modern twists on classic dishes.

Chef TV Blog Recipes 

On a global food adventure meeting inspiring people along the way.

Filtering by Tag: Pie

Banana & Pineapple Meringue Pie

Andy Bates

Discovered in Rio de Janeiro, this is the perfect dessert for a large gathering. Containing tropical fruit and with a super-sweet taste, it captures the colourful flavours of Brazil perfectly.

Serves 4-6


For the fruit and sauce

  • 250g caster sugar
  • 4 tablespoons cold water
  • 120ml double cream
  • 50g butter
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 ripe bananas cut into 2cm slices
  • ½ a ripe pineapple cut into 2cm cubes

For the custard

  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla paste or 1 fresh vanilla pod
  • 15g cornflour
  • 250ml whole milk
  • 200g tin sweet condensed milk

For the meringue

  • 4 egg whites
  • 200g golden caster sugar
  • 1 teaspoon cornflour
  • 50g desiccated coconut



For the fruit and sauce

Pre-heat oven to 200ºC / Fan 180°C / Gas Mark 6

Pour the sugar into the casserole, add the water and stir. Heat gently on a low to medium heat until the sugar has dissolved.

Turn up the heat slightly and allow to bubble for 5 minutes until the mixture turns to caramel. Do not take off the heat or stir during this process.

Stir in the cream, butter and salt.

Place the fruit into the stoneware dish and pour the caramel over.

For the custard

Whisk the egg yolks, vanilla and cornflour together in the milk pan. Gradually whisk in the milk and condensed milk and bring to the boil, stirring constantly.

When the custard starts to thicken and boil, take off the heat and pour over the caramel. Leave to cool a little.

For the meringue

In a scrupulously clean and dry bowl whisk the egg whites until they double in size and stand in stiff peaks.

Mix the sugar and cornflour together and fold into the egg whites, a third at a time, until shiny and holding the stiff peaks, then fold in the coconut.

Spoon the meringue mix on top of the custard making peaks with each spoonful.

Put the dish in the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes or until golden on top. Turn off the oven and leave for 10 minutes. Serve warm.

Cook's Notes

  • As an alternative to making caramel, buy a tin of Dulce de Leche (boiled condensed milk) available from major supermarkets. Pour it into a bowl, loosen with two tablespoons of double cream and pour over the fruit.

Chicken and Ham Hock Christmas Pie

Andy Bates

This Christmas Pie is a seasonal twist on my favourite Chicken and Ham Hock Pie and full of festive flavours. Don’t be put off by the long recipe, it’s worth the wait and makes the perfect addition to the larder if you have guests staying over Christmas. The cranberries and chestnuts add a cheerful and colourful layer of stuffing to the pie.





  • 1 lb 5¼ oz (600g) home-cooked ham hock
  • 1 lb 5¼ oz (600g) boned weight of chicken thighs, skinned
  • 800 ml chicken stock
  • 4 tsp. chopped thyme
  • 3½ oz (100g) fresh cranberries
  • 7 oz (200g) cooked chestnuts
  • 1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 oz (30g) butter
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 gelatine leaves

For the hot-water crust pastry:

  • 0.4 pt (200 ml) water
  • 6 oz (170g) lard
  • 15¾ oz (450g) plain flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 free-range egg, beaten

For the cranberry topping:

  • 150g cranberries
  • 100ml orange Juice
  • 1 heaped tablespoon sugar
  • 1 tsp thyme



First make the pastry.


On a low heat cook the onion in the butter for 4-5 minutes until soft. Leave to cool.


In a food processor mince a third of the chicken thighs, a third of the ham and a pinch of salt. In a large bowl mix the processed meat with the chopped onions, cranberries, chestnuts and parsley and season.


Slice the ham into slices roughly 3cm thick. Put the chicken thighs between 2 sheets of clingfilm and batter them out with a rolling pin till roughly the same thickness as the ham.

Pre-heat the oven to 175°C/gas mark 6.


Mix the flour and salt in a bowl and make a well in the centre. Bring the water and lard to the boil in a saucepan then stir it into the flour with a wooden spoon to form a smooth dough. Leave the pastry for 5 minutes if too hot to handle.


Lightly grease a pie ring measuring 15-20cm by about 8-10cm deep and line the bottom with a disc of lightly greased greaseproof paper. Place it on a lined grease proofed baking tray.

Take two thirds of the dough and on a lightly floured table, roll it into a circle so it is large enough to line the pie ring and overlap the edge. Roll and place the pastry into the flan ring, carefully press into the corners and allow it to just hang over the edge. Roll the remaining pastry into a circle for the lid.

Cover the bottom of the pie with a layer of ham and season, then a layer of chicken and season again. Next add a thick layer of cranberry and chestnut mixture pushing down firmly. Finish the filling with a layer of ham and finally a layer of chicken remembering to season each layer.

Brush the pie edges with egg wash and place the lid on top. Trim the edges of the pastry with a knife and pinch the base and top pastry edges together with your thumb to crimp the pie and create a seal.

Brush the top of the pie all over with the beaten egg, make a hole in the middle of the pastry lid and cook for 1 hour. Remove the ring and brush the sides and top again with egg before baking for a further 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool. Once the pie is cold refrigerate for 2-3 hours.


Now for the jelly, soak the gelatine leaves in cold water until they soften and squeeze out any water. Heat about a third of the chicken stock in a saucepan and stir in the gelatine until it's dissolved then stir into the rest of the stock. Leave to cool but do not let it set.

For the cranberry topping, to a pan add all the ingredients except the thyme and over a medium heat bring to the boil and cook for 5 minutes reducing just a little. Allow to cool.

Grab your cold pie and check around the pastry for any holes and fill them with softened butter so that the jelly doesn't escape. Cut the top of the pastry off in a circle keeping the edges intact, I use a small plate to guide me. Pour the jelly into the pastry until the pie is filled with jelly. Cool in fridge until jelly is set. Grab your cranberry topping and carefully place a layer over the exposed top of the pie, then sprinkled some loose thyme for the finishing touch. Enjoy!



Lamb Pie & Broad Bean Mash

Andy Bates

On the brief for my cooking demonstration at the BBC Good Food Show Dubai, I was told to make sure the ingredients were accessible and had a middle eastern theme. So what better than to put a twist to on a great British classic with the addition of those middle eastern flavours. 

Pie and mash but instead of beef, let's use lamb and add cinnamon that everyone knows as a great culinary match. I am using rough puff as the lid, a versatile pastry that works with these big flavours. And by adding toasted pine nuts just before rolling the pastry on adds a welcoming crunchy texture to the pie.

Paired with a broad bean mash being sweet works well with the lamb and is a great alternative to classic potato mash. Garden peas will work just as well too.



Serves 4


  • 750g minced lamb
  • 1 large onion finely chopped
  • 4 cloves of garlic crushed
  • 1 tbsp tomato puree 
  • 1 tsp ground cumin
  • 1 tsp ground allspice
  • 1 tsp ground coriander
  • 1 pinch ground nutmeg 
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 500ml chicken stock
  • 30g toasted pine nuts
  • salt and pepper

For the pastry:

  • 200g plain flour
  • 125g cold butter cubed
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 egg yolk
  • dash of water
  • egg yolk for brushing

For the Broad Bean mash:

  • 1kg Podded Broad Beans
  • 1 Medium Potato peeled, cooked and mashed
  • 500ml milk
  • 25ml extra virgin olive oil
  • 50g grated Pparmesan
  • a handful of mint leaves, chopped
  • 50g feta
  • zest of 1 lemon



For the pastry:

Sift the flour and salt into a bowl and add the butter, gently mix, and add the egg yolk and a dash of water.  Combine to a dough making sure there are butter lumps throughout. Wrap in clingfilm and chill.

For the Lamb:

In a saucepan, heat the oil till smoking and fry off the lamb in batches until browned and golden all over. Transfer with a slotted spoon to a plate.

To the pan, add the onions and garlic, lower the heat and sweat off for 5 minutes. Then, return the lamb to the pan. Add the spices and cook off for a further 5 minutes. Add the tomato puree and chicken stock, place the lid on and cook for 2 hours.

Remove the lid, turn up the heat and reduce by a 1⁄3 to thicken.

Season with salt & pepper, add the pine nuts and allow to cool.

To assemble:

Pre-heat oven to 180C.

Fill four individual pie dishes with the lamb filling.

Brush the rims of the pie dishes with egg yolk. Separate the pastry into four and roll into circles/ovals 10mm thick making sure they overlap each pie dish, top with a circle of pastry, seal and crimp the edges and trim around the sides of your dish to neaten if needed.

Brush the top of the pastry with egg yolk. Bake for about 25­-30 minutes till the pastry is golden brown. Cool for 5­-10 minutes before serving.

For the mash:

First, remove the outer shell of the beans.

In a saucepan, bring the milk to a boil and add the beans, cook for 3-­4 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer the beans to a food processor and puree.

Add the potato, parmesan, salt and pepper, mint and a little of the milk to loosen and quickly blitz to combine. Transfer to a bowl and garnish with the crumbled feta and a drizzle of olive oil.

Beef Cheek & Pumpkin Pie

Andy Bates

When the cold weather snap arrives and the leaves start falling, we all start craving something warm with a bit of comfort. And my go to dish in autumn has always been PIE! Surprise, Surprise ;-)  

Now, I have combined my love for beef cheeks with beer and pumpkin! This is a great way to use up all those pumpkins that are lying around for Halloween as well. Topped with my ultimate flakey and golden pastry to make the perfect pie that is sure to impress. 

If you can’t find beef cheeks, any other slow cooking beef cuts will work fine such as brisket or ask your local butcher. Also, you may find squash or sweet potato to be a great alternative for pumpkin.

My Beef Cheek and Pumpkin Pie


Serves 4


  • 2 beef cheeks, cut into 4cm cubes
  • 1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 5 cloves of garlic, cut in half skin on
  • 2 sprigs of thyme
  • 500ml pumpkin beer or your favourite ale
  • 500g pumpkin, peeled & cut into 3cm cubes
  • 750ml of good quality beef or veal stock
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • olive oil for frying
  • salt & pepper

For the Pastry:

  • 200g plain flour
  • 150g butter, chilled & cut into 1cm cubes
  • 50ml sour cream
  • 1 tsp salt
  • egg yolk for brushing


In a bowl place the beef cheeks, onion, garlic, thyme, beer with a pinch of pepper. Cover and refrigerate for at least 24 hours. 

Next day take the beef cheeks out of the bowl, pat dry and season with salt and pepper. In a heavy based pan, heat some oil to high heat and fry off in batches until brown all over. *Do not overcrowd the pan


Place in an oven-proof saucepan and add the beer marinade and veg to the pan, add the beef stock, cover and cook in a low oven 130C/250F for 3 hours or until very tender but not falling apart.


Carefully strain through a sieve into a clean saucepan reserving beef and stock only but keeping them separate. Discard the remaining veg and herbs. Reduce the stock until thick and glossy then whisk in a tbsp of butter. Add the beef and the pumpkin chunks. The pumpkin will cook when the pastry is cooking (pumpkin will fall apart if cooked too long). Allow to cool and refrigerate until needed.


For the pastry:

Add the flour and salt into a food processor, add the butter and combine to a breadcrumb consistently. Add the sour cream and pulse to combine. Wrap in clingfilm and chill for at least 1 hour in the refrigerator.



To assemble:

Pre-heat oven to 180C/ 350F or gas mark 4. 

Fill four individual pie dishes with the beef and pumpkin filling. Separate the pastry into 4 and roll into circles/ovals, 10mm thick making sure they overlap each pie dish to make a lid. Brush egg yolk around the rim of the pie dish then top with a circle of pastry, seal and crimp the edges and trim around the sides to neaten.

Brush pastry with the egg yolk and prick the top with a knife. Bake for about 20-­25 minutes till the pastry is golden brown. Cool for 5­-10 minutes before serving.


photos by Carolina Menendez. 

Pumpkin Pie

Andy Bates



For the pastry:

  • 225g plain flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 150g butter, cold & cut into cubes
  • 75g icing sugar
  • 1 free-range egg

For the filling:

  • 700g mashed, cooked pumpkin passed through a sieve
  • 200ml evaporated milk
  • 200ml double cream
  • 3 free-range eggs, beaten
  • 2 egg yolk
  • 200g light brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • Nutmeg to grate



Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.

For the pastry:


In a food processor mix together the flour and sugar then add the butter, and whiz until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Empty into a bowl then beat together the egg and slowly add, mixing until the pastry forms a ball. Wrap tightly in cling film and refrigerate for two hours.

Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to a 2mm thickness. Use to line a 28cm tart ring placed on a baking sheet. Rest the lined tart ring in the fridge for 20 minutes.

Line the tart ring with greaseproof paper and fill with baking beans to keep the base's shape, and bake blind for about 20 minutes. Remove the greaseproof paper and baking beans and return to the oven for 5-8 minutes or until the pastry starts to turn golden brown. Remove from the oven and brush with egg yolk and allow to cool.

Turn the oven down to 160°C/gas mark 3.



Bring the cream, sugar and spices to the boil then quickly whisk onto beaten eggs. Add the pumpkin mix and gently beat in until everything is mixed. 

Fill the pastry case with the pumpkin mix. Carefully place in the middle of the oven and bake for 40-45 minutes or until the mix appears set but not too firm. Remove from the oven and cover the surface liberally with grated nutmeg.

Allow to cool to room temperature before serving.

British Pie Awards 2015

Andy Bates


It's April and that can only mean one thing to me... The British Pie Awards!

This year, the British Pie Awards invited me back to not only judge but to also compère their awards lunch the following day.


While looking at the list of judges a few days earlier I discovered that Marcus Bean, lover of all things chocolate and excerise, would be attending and decided via twitter we'd go for a run around the mighty Pie-shire (Leicestershire to be exact) on the morning of the judging. Our plan being that if we were going to be eating pie all day then at least a little morning exercise would just justify what was ahead.


The awards as every year are held in St. Mary's Church with Reverend Kevin Ashby opening up the doors on the two conditions...

  1. That we, the people respect the church
  2. He can be a judge and eat pie too 

On the morning of the big day, the church was buzzing with excitement with local and national press attending. There were 830 pies from over 130 pie makers to be judged and as always it's great to see the Pierates making themselves busy like kids in a candy shop. Before the judging commences 'Revd Kevin' addresses the congregation with a sermon and a pie prayer. 

My chosen category was Class 1 "The Melton Mowbary Pork Pie" to be judged by myself and master baker Richard Watkins (being a 'Bates' I am allowed an wry smile at that title ;). Richard has been making pork pies for years at his family-owned business in Westgate, Gratham and certainly knows his shoulder from belly.

This category calls for all pies to comply with all specifications needed to be an authentic Melton Mowbray Pork Pie by Melton Mowbray Pork Pie Association which is explained as such... "The Melton Mowbray Pork Pie is a distinct product that is recognisably different from other pork pies, both in physical characteristics and in reputation. The sides of a Melton Mowbray Pork Pie are bow-shaped as they are baked free standing, whereas most other pork pies are straight-sided being baked in hoops. The meat used is fresh pork which is naturally grey when cooked, liked roast pork, not pink like other pork pies which used cured pork. The meat must be particulate, as we use chopped pork, not smooth on the palate as most other pork pies are because they used minced meat. The Melton Mowbray Pork Pie is also well jellied and the meat seasoned with salt and pepper."


We have 14 pies to try and our judging criteria included; appearance, pastry thickness, over boil, filling and taste. They are all of the highest quality. The hardest part I found was not washing each mouthful down with a bite of a pickled onion and a glug of ale, so my taste buds had to be at the top of their game. Crispness, crunch and seasoning of pastry, fat content and slight peppery after taste are all things I'm keeping an eye out for. About halfway through Richard and I found one that clearly stood out. We continue to try the rest (all amazing) but we had already chosen our winner. The results for Class 1 were as follows:

Winner: Handcrafter Melton Mowbray Pork Pie by Ye Olde Pork Pie Shoppe

Second: Artisan 440g Melton Mowbray Pork Pie by Walker & Son for M&S

Third: Large Melton Mowbray Pork Pie by Walker & son for Co-op website

After the all the eating AKA judging, a few of the judges and I rolled ourselves to the local for a welcomed pint and a chance to sit down and adjust our belts. Some of the other judges had tried over 40 pies! Take a peek at all the categories and winners of this year's British Pie Awards. 

The Great North Pie Co.

The Great North Pie Co.

The awards lunch took place the following day and was back in the church and PIE was on the menu for mains and dessert. The awards went very well with Boghall Butchers and Great North Pie Co taking the lions share of the awards but in the end small producer & Supreme champion went to Great North Pie CoCongrats to all involved! This is was only my second year at this prestigious event but everyone made me feel exceptionally welcome and very much part of the Pie family.


Afterwards the day was topped off by a lift back to London from old friends Piebury Corner, who incidentally won 2nd place in Class 8 Chicken Pie category for the “Theo Walcott” Jerk Chicken Porter Pie. Amongst our chat on the journey home they confined in me an idea to take over a well known Spanish island, start selling pies and rename it Pie-biza.

Now thats what I call the beginning of world PIE domination :)



Wild Rabbit, Pancetta & Sage Pie

Andy Bates


Wabbit! My latest assignment for BBC Food & Drink, they have taken me to Devon to meet Chef, Hunter, Forager and all round nice guy Tim Maddams. Tim invites me into his idyllic home with a back garden overlooking a lush valley where he cooks me two recipes using wild rabbits that he shot a few days before. The first dish was rabbit leg and chanterelle pasta and the second dish is easy slow cooked rabbit with pancetta and tomatoes. Both extremely tasty and both showing just how versatile wild rabbit can be. We really should be eating more these wild and tasty animals that have some how become to be known as the 'poor man's chicken'. They can be ordered through supermarkets, butchers and even online. They have such great flavour and quality of meat, nutritious, low in fat and full of protein and vitamins. They are also very good value for money, even from a supermarket a wild rabbit costs less than a free-range chicken.


One more bit of advice, just make sure to not grab yourself an old buck which can be a little too strong in taste. The perfect age for a wild rabbit is between 6-8 weeks old and most importantly stay clear of farmed rabbit imported from abroad. 

Here's my 'Wild Rabbit & Pancetta Pie' recipe using ingredients and flavours that I believe Tim would approve of ;) 

My Wild Rabbit, Pancetta & Sage Pie




  • 1 wild rabbit
  • 100g pancetta or smoked bacon lardons
  • 2 shallots, peeled & finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp of olive oil 
  • 150ml white wine
  • 150ml chicken stock
  • 100ml double cream
  • 100g small button mushrooms, each cut in half
  • 1 carrot , rough small dice
  • 1tbsp whole grain mustard 
  • 1/2 bunch sage, roughly chopped 


  • 400g strong plain flour
  • 1 tsp fine sea salt
  • 300g butter, ice cold
  • 100-150ml cold water



For the filling, divide the rabbit into small portions on the bone and season with salt and pepper. Pour 1 tbsp of olive oil into a large pan, then seal off the rabbit until nicely browned and set aside.

In the same pan, seal off the bacon until caramelised and set aside with the rabbit. Sweat the shallots, carrots and mushrooms in the remaining oil for 5 minutes, then add the wine and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the liquid just covers the vegetables. 

Add the chicken stock, rabbit and bacon and return to a boil for about 20 minutes until reduced. Add the double cream and mustard and continue to simmer until the sauce has thickened. Add the roughly chopped sage and set aside to cool. 

Once cooled, take the rabbit out of the stew, take the meat off the bone (discarding the bones) and return the meat back to the stew. Chill until needed. 

Preheat your oven to 180C. 

Follow directions for my all butter ruff puff pastry

Divide the pastry into four and shape over a ramekin or jam jar and then place in a small bowl to retain the shape. Place spoonfuls of the filling into the bowl-shaped pastry and fill halfway. Squeeze the top together and gently push down, being careful not to break the pastry. Cut any excess pastry on the top and brush with egg yolk. Bake for 45 mins, making sure the pinch on the top is fully cooked through.


Chicken & Ham Hock Pie

Andy Bates

This pie won the 'Best Pie Award' in the Street Food Awards 2010 and is still my favourite. The ham hock is full of flavour, and the black treacle adds a lovely rich sweetness and depth of colour to the jelly. I've experimented with different seasonings, but lots of pepper and thyme give the best results. A hot water crust pie to me is one of the benchmarks of British cuisine and served with either salad cream or piccalilly (the acidity of the vinegar with cold seasoned meat is a dream combo) and a pint of ale is sometimes a forgotten meal in these present times of burgers and barbecues.

CHEF TIP: Soaking the ham hocks overnight will take away some of the saltiness of the brine. If bought on the day of cooking, place the ham hocks in water and bring to a quick boil, then refresh with clean water before CONTINUING. 

My Chicken & Ham Hock Pie 



  • 2 large ham hocks
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 1 celery stick, chopped
  • 1 carrot, chopped
  • 1 handful of thyme
  • 1 tsp black treacle
  • Salt, black pepper (medium coarse ground) and thyme, to season
  • 6-8 boneless, skinless chicken thighs
  • 260g plain flour
  • Pinch of salt
  • 175g lard or butter
  • 200ml water
  • Small amount of softened butter


Soak the Ham hocks overnight in cold water. Place the ham hocks in a large saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil and skim any scum off the surface.

Reduce heat to a gentle simmer and add the chopped vegetables, a teaspoon of chopped thyme and the black treacle. The treacle will take some of the saltiness out of the ham and give the stock a wonderful rich color. Simmer for 2-3 hours or until the meat is just starting to fall off the bones.

Remove the meat from the pan and allow it to cool. Strain the remaining stock into a clean pan and return to the boil until it has reduced by a third, then take the pan off the heat and leave to cool. This will become the jelly for the pie later on.

Pick the meat from the ham hock removing any fat and muscle. Flake the meat into a bowl and season with coarse black pepper and the freshly chopped thyme to your taste. Remember this is a cold pie so pepper will really bring out flavor once rested and chilled. Hocks can be very salty so do taste before adding any extra salt.


Next place the chicken between two pieces of cling-film and batter out with a rolling pin to tenderise and season with salt & pepper.

Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Mix the flour and salt in a bowl making a well in the centre. Bring the water and lard to the boil in a saucepan then stir it into the flour with a wooden spoon to form a smooth dough. Leave for ten minutes until cool enough to handle.

Lightly grease a pie ring measuring 15-20cm by about 8-10cm deep and line the bottom with a disc of lightly greased greaseproof paper. Place it on a similarly lined and greased baking tray.

Take two thirds of the dough and, on a lightly floured table, roll it into a circle large enough to line the base and sides of the pie ring and overlap the edge. Place the pastry into the pie ring, carefully pressing into the corners, allowing the pastry to just hang over the edge. Roll the remaining pastry into a circle for the lid.

Cover the bottom of the pie with a layer of ham, then a layer of chicken. Repeat this again until the pie is filled. Brush the pie edges with egg wash and place the lid on top.

Pinch the lid edge and top pastry edges together with your thumb to crimp the pie and create a seal. Trim the edge with a knife removing any overhanging pastry.

Brush the top of the pie with the beaten egg, make a hole in the middle of the pastry lid and cook for 1 hour. Remove the ring and brush the sides and top again with egg before baking for a further 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool. Refrigerate for 2-3 hours.


When the pie is cold, fill any holes in the pastry with softened butter so that the jelly doesn't escape. Take the jelly from the fridge, remove the layer of fat from the surface and gently reheat to melt the jelly Pour the jelly into the round hole in the top of the pastry until the pie is filled. Return to the fridge until the jelly is set.

Brazilian Pies

Andy Bates


During my time in the capital of Minas Gerais, Belo Horizonte, Brazil. 

Minas Gerais has one of the most rural countrysides in Brazil with many farms and plantations but it's the richness of it's interior thats translates into hearty and nutritious foods that locals enjoy in their homes and even better on the streets. I met up with chef Leonardo Paixao, Leonardo is a serious foodie and passionate chef. At just 7 years olds he started cooking with his grandfather and by the time he was 12 he was serving up culinary delights at family gatherings. Despite graduating from medical school, his food obsession won out and he now owns a successful restaurant, but is still very passionate about food served on the streets. He loves the rich history of the food here and how the land dictates it. Leo tells me that he is going to take me to try the best empadas, which is Brazilian for PIES and for me it doesn't get better! Plus it's the dish I am best known for (as some of you might already know ;)


But please don't confuse empada with an empanada. 

I met a brother and sister duo named Sheila and Humberto Abreu. They've been running their family empada stall for more than 25 years. Their stalls are the most recognised in Belo Horizonte and move to a different part of the city daily plus they also have four shops. That alone is proof that they must be doing something right. I tried three different versions of empada; chicken, cheese and prawn (which is their best seller). They were lovely, little parcels of tastiness, just perfect if you ask me! 

It was great to meet someone who makes pies with as much passion as I do and his flavours have inspired me to make my own pie with a Brazilian twist. I'm using a filling based on xim-xim, a popular Afro-Brazilian stew made of chicken and peanuts. 

My Brazilian Pies 




  • 700g plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 100g cold lard, cubed, plus extra for greasing
  • 150ml cold water
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg whites
  • 2 teaspoons white wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil


  • 4 chicken thighs, diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • Juice of 1 lime
  • Olive oil
  • 2 onions, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 bunch spring onions, finely chopped
  • 1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
  • Thumb sized piece fresh ginger, peeled and grated
  • 2 teaspoons turmeric
  • cups dried shrimps, ground in a food processor
  • cup ground roast peanuts
  • 2 teaspoons tomato purée
  • 250ml hot chicken stock
  • 50g creamed coconut, grated
  • Small bunch fresh coriander, chopped


First make the pastry dough. Rub the flour, salt and lard together with your fingertips until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs then make a well in the centre. Whisk together the water, egg, egg white and vinegar. Pour into the well and gradually mix together with a fork. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead gently until smooth. Wrap in clingfilm and set aside to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.

Meanwhile make the filling. Combine the chicken thighs, garlic and lime juice in a bowl, cover in clingfilm and set aside to marinate for 15 minutes. Heat a splash of olive oil in a large, heavy-based pan and add the onions. Fry for 5 minutes until soft, then add the chicken pieces and fry for 2 to 3 minutes. Add the spring onions, chilli, ginger and turmeric and fry for a further 2 minutes until fragrant. Add the dried shrimps, peanuts and tomato purée, fry for a minute then add the chicken stock. Bring to the boil then simmer for 20 minutes until then chicken is tender. Add the creamed coconut and cook for a further 2 to 3 minutes until thickened. Remove from the heat, stir through the coriander and leave to cool.

Grease two 8 holes muffin tins with a little lard. Pinch off a small ball of pastry and press into the bottom of the tin to form a base. Repeat to make 16 bases then divide the cooled chicken mixture between them. Pinch off a piece of the remaining dough, flatten into a rough circle and press on top of the filling to form a lid. Use a round pastry cutter to trim the edges then repeat with the remaining pastry.

Whisk together the egg yolks and oil and glaze the tops of the pies. Transfer to the fridge to rest for 30 minutes before baking. Preheat the oven to 190°C. Glaze the pies with a little more of the egg yolk and oil mixture then bake for 20 to 25 minutes until golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack to cool slightly before serving.

Brazilian Beef Brisket & Coffee Pie

Andy Bates

Bruno and I roasting coffee

Bruno and I roasting coffee

Bruno and I enjoying a cup of his coffee

Bruno and I enjoying a cup of his coffee

Minas Gerais is the biggest producer of coffee in Brazil and Brazil handles a third of all the coffee in the world. To put it into perspective, out of every three cups of coffee produced worldwide, one of them is from Brazil. So I wanted to find out more and I was told there's a place where they passionately believe the preparation and consumption of coffee is an art - The Coffee Academy. I hadn't even gone inside yet and there was an amazing aroma of fresh coffee. I met Bruno Souza, the owner of this two-story coffee haven, where he creates, tastes and evaluates everything coffee! Bruno is a fourth generation of a coffee making family, he is a real character and exudes enthusiasm and information. That day, I roasted coffee for the first time.  To joke with Bruno, I asked him how much coffee he drinks through the day and he says that on an average about a litre and a half of brewed coffee and two or three espressos. Could you imagine yourself after that amount of coffee?

Bruno explains to me that coffee is not just for sweet dishes but also for savoury dishes, that was surprising to me. So I left with a bag of Bruno's coffee and used it to inspire me to create my very own savoury dish, CHECK IT OUT! 

My Brazilian Beef Brisket & Coffee Pie 



  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1.5 kilograms beef brisket, cut into large chunks
  • 75 grams plain flour
  • Sea salt and black pepper
  • 2 onions, peeled and finely sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
  • 2 red peppers, deseeded and diced
  • 2 dried ancho chillies, soaked in boiling water until soft then roughly chopped
  • 400 millilitres dry white wine
  • 500 millilitres freshly brewed coffee
  • 2 x 400 millilitres cans black-eyed beans, drained and rinsed
  • Small bunch coriander, roughly chopped


  • 1 kilograms cassava, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 50 grams unsalted butter
  • 50 millilitres double cream
  • 100 grams mature cheddar cheese, grated


Heat the oil in a large, heavy-based casserole. Toss the beef in seasoned flour and fry in batches until golden brown all over.

Add a little more oil to the pan then add the onions and fry for 5 minutes until softened. Add the garlic, peppers and ancho chilli and fry for a further 5 minutes. Add the wine, bring to the boil and cook for 5 minutes to burn off the alcohol.

Return the beef to the pan, pour over the coffee and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook for 2 hours, stirring occasionally. Stir through the chopped coriander and season to taste.

Meanwhile, boil the cassava in a large pan of salted boiling water for 20 minutes until soft. Drain thoroughly then mash with the butter and cream.

Spoon half of the mash into the bottom of a heatproof serving dish, top with the beef and spoon the sauce over the top.

Top the beef with the remaining mash, sprinkle with cheese and cook under a hot grill for 5 minutes until the cheese is golden and bubbling.