Pie Crusts & Happy Thoughts

What are your happy thoughts, the kind you think of and immediately smile? Perhaps it’s your Bff, your kids, or even your dog. Maybe its a song on the radio, your latest nail polish color or binge watching your netflix drama. Summer, summer makes me happy. Clean sheets on the line, kids running in the yard, sitting on the patio with cold drink. Market days. Yes, it may be wishful thinking but with yesterday the temperature reaching 15, it began to feel like summer.

So keep your thoughts continually fixed on all that is … honorable, admirable, beautiful, respectful, pure, holy, merciful and kind. And fasten your thoughts on every glorious work of God.  

Philippians 4:8

Nothing beats a Mennonite vegetable pie from the market stall. Super flaky, chalked full of veggies and pre made homemade convenience, ready in less then 30 min. We have a rather large group of Mennonites a short distance away. Each Saturday they head to the farmers market where they sell, various goods. Amazing produce, the best apple fritters on the PLANET (no lie they are FAMOUS), and pies. That is – until recently, the market is closed, along with everything else. If your one of the lucky few who either are of Mennonite decent or live with a Mennonite neighbor you may still be able to acquire some of these goodies. If you ask sweetly or perhaps clean a barn or two. But as for the rest of us, we will have to make do making our own.

I set out to make a vegan style pot pie similar to the super tasty Mennonite ones I craved. Although it did not take 30 min, I still had much success.

You will find I asked for a prepared pie crust. I use the King Arthur recipe subbing vegan butter found here. If your vegan roots run a little deeper sub in all or part coconut oil more info on how to do that go here.

We used chicken stew recipe originally found on Delish. I tweaked it making it vegan. I often add extra vegetables to my stews. Got broccoli – add it in, cauliflower and beans are great too. I subbed dried textured vegetable protein “Chicken chunks” by Hoosier Hill farms avail on Amazon. It was an impulse buy and my first experience using Chunk style protein. I was pleasantly surprised at how well they retained texture and flavor, even after freezing and baking. They certainly made life easier and my kids enjoyed them not noticing the pot pies were vegan- but feel free to omit.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tbsp. vegan butter or olive oil
  • 2 large carrots, peeled and sliced into coins
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper 
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp. all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup TVP chunks. (I used hoosier hill farms)
  • 3 sprigs fresh thyme 
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 3/4 lb.  potatoes, quartered
  • 3 c. vegetable broth 
  • Freshly chopped parsley, for garnish
  • 1 pastry for double crust pie shell

Prepare your pie shell and cut top set aside and place in fridge.

In a large pot over medium heat, melt butter. Add carrots and celery and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring often, until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

Add flour and stir until vegetables are coated, then add , thyme, bay leaf, potatoes, and broth. Season with salt and pepper. Bring mixture to a simmer and cook until the potatoes are tender, 10 minutes.

Add TVP Chunks, cook for additional 5 min until they start to absorb some of the liquid and become soft again. Cool mixture

Pour into prepared pie crust and roll our dough for lid. Cover with top crust, trimming and cutting air vents. You can freeze at this point or bake.

Bake 375 for 50 minutes or until pastry is deep golden brown. To bake from frozen: place foil on pie bake for 45 min remove foil and bake for another 45 min until crust is deep golden brown.

This will make one 9 inch deep dish pie or 4 smaller individual pot pies.

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