Is it good blogging etiquette to do previews of posts you're too busy to write? Let's give it a try. Here's mushroom pie. In brief: roll out some dough, top with sauteed mushrooms, onions, and cheese, then bake 'til done. Details coming soon.
Updated Dec. 8: Okay, here we go: I’ve wanted to make a savory Russian pie for a while. This isn’t it, but I don’t care. My makeshift rustic pie/galette was great. A traditional Russian pie (pirog) is usually made with yeast dough and toppings like cabbage, mushrooms and onions, or even fish. Here, I used yeast-free dough and a hodge-podge topping of sautéed onions, mushrooms and whatever cheese I had in the fridge. The dough was easy to make and roll out, the toppings were a cinch, and the whole thing took only 20 minutes to bake. I can even see myself using this dough for pizza. Yeast, who needs it?
The dough recipe is from Nigella Lawson's Feast, by way of The Traveler's Lunchbox. I usually cut the recipe in half when I make it, and then freeze half of that. So you need a quarter of the original recipe for this pie.
The dough ingredients are 2 tbs. of butter, 1 egg, 1 cup full-fat, plain yogurt, 1/2 tsp. salt, 1 tsp. baking soda, and about 3 cups of flour, with an extra cup or so for kneading. Mix the yogurt, eggs, butter and salt in a bowl. Add flour by the cupful, stirring until it’s absorbed. Knead on a floured surface for a few minutes, adding the baking soda. Refrigerate 20 minutes before using (I always freeze half the dough for future use).
In the meantime, sauté a bunch of chopped onions and mushrooms in olive oil or butter. Add a minced garlic clove and ¼ tsp. thyme in the last 30 seconds of cooking. Salt and pepper to taste. Let cool 10-15 minutes. Add cheese—what kind and how much is up to you. I used havarti, and a lot of it. Preheat the oven to 425.
On a floured surface, roll out the dough to a 1/4-inch thickness. Carefully place the dough in a buttered pie pan (I lined mine with foil). Spread the mushrooms over the top. Fold the edges of the dough over the filling to create a crust. Bake 15-25 minutes, until the dough is golden brown. Let cool before eating.
This goes great with soup, especially what I call simple soup—chicken stock, sautéed onions and carrots, and tiny poached chicken meatballs. In a food processor, blitz 1 boneless chicken breast and ½ onion. Add a handful of breadcrumbs, a splash of milk, a good shake of salt, and a dash of red pepper flakes. A bit of grated Parmesan wouldn't hurt, if you have it. Mix. Use a teaspoon to scoop and form small meatballs. Bring the chicken stock to a boil and add the meatballs. Turn the heat down, and simmer 5 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through.