A Pie Too Far

I have a native Suffolk friend who is not unadventurous but is famous for the phrase “I’ve never tasted it but I don’t think I’ll like it” when confronted with new (usually foreign) food. This is not unwarranted xenophobia as Suffolk has a long history of invasion from Caesar’s visit to Boudica’s Iceni through to the Anglo Saxons, Danes, Vikings and Normans from Northern France. Such a response can also be seen in many people’s resistance to change, even though for the most part the only constant is change.
But some changes can be seen as a step too far.
Thus I was bemused and then possibly horrified to learn that a vegetarian pie has claimed the Supreme Champion crown at this year’s British Pie Awards in Melton Mowbray.
There were 23 different classes of hot and cold savoury and dessert pies and pasties for the 151 judges to consider at the competition. The contest played out over three days and took place at St Mary’s Church in the home of the pork pie, Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire.
And there is the essence of a Melton Mowbray pie. Pork!
The winning entry was made with vegetarian jackfruit ‘steak’, gluten-free craft ale and black pepper.
The judges praised the pies ‘crunchy’ pastry and ‘moist filling’
Matthew O’Callaghan, chairman of the Melton Mowbray Pork Pie Association and host of the British Pie Awards, said: “This was a superb pie, it looked good, had a nice even golden bake.
“The pastry was crunchy complemented by the moist filling which had ‘bite’ and the balance of flavours in the pie was just right.
With this pie, gluten-free pies are now equal to any other pie.
“Being vegetarian and gluten free, Pieminister’s Mooless Pie is an ‘everybody’s pie’, be they vegetarian or meat eater, gluten tolerant or intolerant. Serve this at a meal and almost everyone’s a winner.”
The judges, many of whom are experts and old hands, were asked to mark the pies on criteria including eating qualities, the filling, and how a maker could improve their entry.
The Mooless pie is shown above and more details can be found at https://pieminister.co.uk/pies/mooless-moo/
Why you should want a meatless meat pie I do not know but I congratulate the marketing whizz who dreamed up the idea once he found a good recipe. As for the pie tasting burghers of Melton Mowbray they can only deserve what they get.