This is a firm favourite from my childhood and perfect for these chilly January days. I prefer to make it with some local sausage meat from the butcher and serve it with creamy, mashed potato, peas and lashings of salad cream… but my kids prefer it simply with some cheery smiley faces. Either way, this dish is easy to make and full of the warming home comforts that we all crave at this time of the year.
- 8oz plain flour
- pinch of salt
- 4oz butter (softened)
- ice cold water
- 2 sausages per person (or one tube of sausage meat from the butcher).
- 2 large tins of baked beans
Place together the flour, salt and butter in a large bowl and ‘rub’ them together lightly with your fingertips until you have a bowl of golden crumbs. Add the cold water a little at a time and mix until the pastry comes together to form a dough (try not to work the pastry too much at this stage). Wrap in clingfilm and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. You can make the pastry earlier in the day or just before you make the pie, but the time in the fridge allows the butter to harden slightly and for the gluten to relax so this 30 minutes in the fridge will vastly improve your pastry.
NB. If you don’t have the time (or the inclination!) to make the pastry then shop bought pastry (shortcrust or puff) would work just as well here.
Whilst the pastry is chillling, preheat the oven to 200 degrees (180 fan). Take the skins off the sausages and place them into a large, oven-proof dish, squashing them a little so that they cover the base of the dish, and place in oven for 10 minutes. I use a 10″ square dish with is perfect size for 2 adult portions and 2 child portions.
Take the sausages out of the oven and tip the beans over them, spreading them out evenly over the sausage meat. Roll out the pastry (on a floured surface so it doesn’t stick horribly) and place over the top of the sausage/bean mixture. You can egg wash here if you like but equally delicious if you don’t. Cut a little hole in the top and put back into the oven for 20-25 minutes or until golden on top.
Serves a family of 4 people.