Wednesday, July 11, 2012

kangaroo pies and home made tomato sauce

The pie theme continues. As the pumpkin pie wasn't a hit I thought I'd give meat pies and a go. Kangaroo is the red meat of choice in our house so I picked up some kangaroo mince (sold in the supermarket if you are looking for it) and created 'party' pie size pies plus a few empanada shaped pies. I used a muffin tray to make the party pies, having never done this before I was a little nervous it wouldn't work out but it worked perfectly. I made 8 mini pies and 6 empanadas with the recipe below.

I also tried out a sugar free tomato sauce recipe that I adapted from Sarah Wilson's I Quit Sugar cookbook. Both the pies and the sauce were winners. So much so that the leftovers were requested for breakfast the day. We've come a long way from our chicken noodle soup breakfast of last week. On to the recipes.

Kangaroo Pies and Home-made tomato sauce 

For the pies
Buy or make pastry

Pastry (make 2 batches - one for bottoms and one for tops)
2 cups flour (I use white spelt)
100 grams chilled butter cut into small cubes
1 egg yolk, whisked
2-3 tbsp chilled water

In a large mixing bowl rub butter into flour with your fingertips until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Make a well in the centre and drizzle in egg yolk and add water 2 tablespoons first, then using a butter knife start to cut the water into the flour until it starts coming together in clumps, you will be able to tell here if you need to add more water, if it is coming together easily then keep going and don't worry about adding more but if it is looking very dry and crumbly and like there is no way all the flour will come together then add more water. Then using your hands lightly bring it together into a ball. And set it aside in the fridge to rest for an hour.

On a lightly floured surface roll out pastry. Grease muffin tins with butter. Cut muffin tray size circles of pastry and line tin with pastry. Don't worry if you need to crimp it in a bit to make it fit it will work out. Bake pastry at 190C for 8-10 minutes until just crisp.

For the filling
Half an onion finely diced (really finely if any fussy little people are going to be eating them)
1 kg minced meat (I used kangaroo but organic beef mince would be good too)
1 dessertspoon of olive oil
1 tablespoon plain or cornflour
a sprig of rosemary
2 bay leaves
splash of Bragg's all purpose seasoning
black pepper

Heat the oil in a heavy based saucepan and gently fry the onion.
Add the mince and brown.
Pour in enough water to just cover (you could use some wine with the water).
Add in rosemary, bayleaf and seasoning.
Bring to boil then reduce to simmer for 30 minutes.
In a cup, make a paste of cornflour and water then stir into meat to create a gravy. If it is too runny looking mix up a bit more flour and water and stir in.
Cook for a further 10 minutes then remove rosemary sprig and bay leaves and leave to cool.

Assemble the pies
Roll out second batch of dough and cut out lids for pies.
Spoon meat filling into each pie case.
Dip your finger into a glass of water and run it around the edge of the pie lid and then cover the pie filling and pinch the lid into place with your finger tips. Repeat until all pies are done.
Prick the top of the pies with a fork a few times so steam can escape.
Place in oven at 180C and cook for 20-25 minutes until pastry is crisp.

To make the empanada shape pies cut out circles of pastry (I used the lid of a round plastic take away food container) and place a spoon or two of meat on one side leaving a 1 cm seam at edge (don't overfill with meat). Wet your fingertip with water and run around edge then fold pastry over and crimp together with your fingers or a fork. Prick the side with a fork a couple of times then bake in oven at 180C for 20-25 minutes.

Sugar free tomato sauce (adapted from Sarah Wilson's I Quit Sugar cookbook)
1 x 400g tin of tomatoes (of course fresh would be great when in season)
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1-2 tablespoons rice malt syrup depending on how sweet you like
1/4 of brown onion very finely chopped
Season with Bragg's all purpose seasoning and black pepper

Put all ingredients in a saucepan and bring to boil. Reduce heat to simmer and then cook until reduced and thick. Cool then place in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth.

If you put this sauce in a squeezy bottle your children will never know the difference. That said, I am a huge believer in educating rather than tricking children into eating real food. Tell your children proudly, we make our own tomato sauce because the one you can buy at the shop is full of sugar and salt and that is not good for our health. And besides home made is sooo much better because you can taste the love.

I do hope you enjoy this recipe as much as my family did. Stay warm winter folk. We're almost halfway through!


  1. I've never thought to make a kangaroo pie before...but like the sound and looks of it. It is too lean on its own?

    1. Hi Trishie, I'd never thought to do it before either I was really happy with the result though and I didn't find it too lean on its own. Give it a go! Thanks for stopping by. Nikki


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