Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Weekend-only veggie pot pie

This is a recipe I’ve been tinkering with. We’re pretty satisfied with it now, though I'd love to get a healthier (and still tasty) biscuit topping. Sunday after I had put it in the oven, I told my husband, “This recipe is a labor of love, so you better appreciate it.” The recipe is not advanced in nature but requires a lot of work, nonetheless. It is really tasty in the end, though–I’ll make it again (on another weekend, or on a holiday).


Winter Veggie Pot Pie with biscuit topping

(Makes 6-8 main-dish servings)


3 medium sweet potatoes (about 3 c.)

2 turnips

1 rutabaga

3 parsnips

1 bunch of organic carrots (smaller than conventional)

2 c. kale (no stems, just leaves)

3 T olive oil

1 tsp. dried ginger

7 cloves of garlic

1 tsp. coarse sea salt

2/3 c. sherry (I have been using cream sherry)

1 1/2 tsp. dried rosemary

1 1/2 tsp. dried sage

2 T. Bragg’s amino acids (or soy sauce)

2 T. arrowroot powder (for thickening)

1 c. water

2 c. cooked white beans, black-eyed peas or field peas


1 1/2 c. whole-wheat flour

1/2 c. white flour (using only whole-wheat will make it too dense)

2 1/2 tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. salt

1/2 tsp. baking soda

1 tsp. white sugar

2 tsp. Mrs. Dash garlic-and-herbs mix, OR, to take it another direction, 2 tsp. honey stirred into the buttermilk

1/2 c. butter

3/4 c. buttermilk

a little extra flour

To make the interior:

Peel your vegetables, and chop them into 1/2-bite size pieces. (The idea is that you would pick up two vegetable pieces or so per bite.) Yes, you will be getting quite a work-out. No, the chopping mechanism on the Cuisinart doesn’t work for this, unless you have a kind I can’t find! As you chop the vegetables, put them in a very large, pref. non-stick pot. (I use the biggest pot I have.)

Once your veggies are chopped and your arm is worn out, add the oil through the sage to the veggies. Turn the burner on med. heat and stir it all together a few times.

As that heats up, mix together the Bragg’s, arrowroot, and water with a fork in a small bowl (or the measuring cup). Pour that into the veggie mix and stir around some more.

Cook on med., uncovered, for about 30 min., stirring regularly to keep from sticking on the bottom. Add more water if needed.

While that is cooking, grease a deep casserole dish. Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.

Then thoroughly sift or stir together the whole-wheat flour through the Mrs. Dash in a medium bowl. Soften your butter in the microwave (don’t melt it!), and cut the butter into the flour mixture with a fork until you have a crumb-like mixture.

Add the buttermilk and stir until just barely mixed. (Too much stirring or kneading of biscuits activates the gluten strands in the wheat and makes the biscuits tough.)

Put some flour out on a flat surface, and put your biscuit mix on it. Knead and flip it a few times–no more than 10–to get it mixed together well. Put flour on a rolling pin and roll out the mixture to a size that will just cover the casserole dish you are using.

When the veggies have cooked about half an hour, stir the beans or peas you are using into the mix. Dump the whole mixture into the sprayed casserole dish. Lay the biscuit topping on top, and slash through the biscuit mix in a pizza-cutting, spokes-style pattern.

Bake for 25-30 minutes–until the biscuit topping is golden-brown and cooked through. (Its moist underside touching the pot pie will take the longest to bake.) Let sit 5 minutes before serving.

Enjoy your tasty pot pie. This pot pie truly comes together as more than the sum of its parts.

Note: If you are someone who is tempted to eat more than one serving of something when it has a tasty bread topping, I suggest you eat a salad or a side dish of veggies to make sure your plate is too full for that.

Oh, and if you’re like us, you most likely won’t be serving 6-8 people. To prevent wasting the tasty pie (and your effort to make it), dole out the remaining servings into individual, freezer-safe dishes, and put tags on the lids to tell you what you’re saving and when you made it.



metamorphose said...

Sounds tasty!

~~Midnight Raider~~ said...

I love veggie potpie, and I'm always looking for a healthy crust. Have you tried using whole wheat pastry flour? I find I can use more of it in dough, as opposed to stone ground whole wheat, which can make dough too dense. Sometimes I make veggie pot pies with a cornbread or polenta-style topping, or I'll just used mashed sweet potatoes and then finish it under the broil to kind of crisp the top of them.

the veggie paparazzo said...

Meta, it is yummy.

Midnight, I've been thinking about making shepherd's pie with sweet potatoes on top instead of regular potatoes. Good, huh? I use regular wheat for pretty much everything, but that's good to know about the pastry flour.

I made lasagna with polenta the other day; it wasn't very pretty, but it tasted sooooo good.