Savoury Artichoke Pie

An appetizing vegetable and fruit dish, Savoury Artichoke Pie may be served as the main course of a vegetarian meal or as a filling accompaniment to grilled steak.6 oz. flour

1 teaspoon salt

5 oz. butter, cut into walnut-sized pieces

3 TO 4 tablespoons iced water

1 egg, lightly beaten

1 oz. butter

1 oz. flour

15 fl. oz. milk

4 oz. Gruyere cheese, grated

1 teaspoon salt

½ teaspoon black pepper

½ teaspoon ground mace

1 ½ lb. Jerusalem artichokes, peeled, boiled, drained and sliced

8 oz. seedless grapes

4 hard-boiled eggs, sliced

First make the pastry. Sift the flour and salt into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Add the butter and iced water. With a knife, mix quickly to a firm dough, which should be lumpy.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough into an oblong shape. Fold it in three and turn it so that the open edge faces you. Roll out again into an oblong shape and proceed as before. Repeat this once again to make three folds and turns’ in all. Wrap the dough in greaseproof or waxed paper and put it in the refrigerator to chill for 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to fairly hot 400 °F (Gas Mark 6, 200°C).

Meanwhile, prepare the filling. In a small saucepan, melt the butter over moderate heat. Remove the pan from the heat and, with a wooden spoon, stir in the flour to make a smooth paste. Gradually add the milk, stirring constantly. Return the pan to the heat and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes or until the sauce is thick and smooth.

Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cheese. Season the sauce with the salt, pepper and mace, then stir in the artichokes and grapes.

Spoon the mixture into a deep pie dish and arrange the egg slices over the top.

Remove the dough from the refriger-ator. If it looks streaky, roll it out into an oblong shape and fold it in three again.

On a floured surface, roll out the dough to 1-inch larger than the top of the pie dish. With a knife, trim the edges and cut out a ½ inch strip around the dough. Dampen the rim of the dish with a pastry brush dipped in water and press the dough strip on to the top of the rim. With the pastry brush dipped in water, lightly moisten the strip.

Using the rolling pin, lift the dough on to the dish. With a knife, trim the dough and, with your fingers, crimp the edges to seal them to the strip already on the dish. With a sharp knife, cut a fairly large cross in the centre of the dough.

With a pastry brush, coat the surface of the dough with the beaten egg.

Place the pie in the oven and bake for 30 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown. Remove the pie from the oven and serve immediately.

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