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days classic, cottage pie? They’re all pies in my book.” The book is divided into five chapters –

Family Favourites, Frugal Pies, Weekend Pies, A Pie in the Hand and Sweet Pies – covering all eventualities, no matter what your budget, ability, timescale, or even the time of year. “Pies aren’t just for winter,” says Genevieve.

“Cooking seasonally is really important to me, so I relished the challenge of turning summery stuff into delicious pies. There are strawberry tarts; asparagus, egg and parmesan tarts; a summery lamb pie that’ll take me to a Greek island in a single mouthful; and a spring version of summer pudding using perfectly pink Champagne rhubarb. “I’m not going to argue that some of the

– if its smells okay it generally is okay. Learn which things are useful for bulking meals out – a little chorizo goes a long way in terms of flavour, ditto a few rashers of bacon, and a few odds and sods of veg and cheese can be combined in innumerable ways with a few eggs to make a frittata.”

There are familiar recipes in the book, like lemon meringue pie (one of Genevieve’s first pie memories) and chicken and mushroom pot pie, as well as more exotic dishes. “Two of the pies that I’m most pleased

recipes don’t require love and patience, which is why there is a whole chapter on ‘Weekend Pies’ to make when you have time on your hands, but there are loads that are pretty quick too. The speediest is without a doubt the Tenderstem and Cambazola tarts. They have a handful of ingredients and can be on the table in minutes. Bingo!” For Genevieve, who grew up in a single-parent family,

✱ Pie! by Genevieve Taylor is out now, £12.99. It has photos by Mike Cooper, and is published by Absolute Press. Visit for details of Genevieve’s forthcoming supper clubs, TV appearances, etc.

with are the Greek lamb filo pie with feta and oregano, and the vegetarian spectacular: a borlotti bean, squash, red pepper and chard pie with goat’s cheese. But the bacon and swede one is pretty darn fine too.” So what’s next in the series? There’s talk of

rice and pasta, or maybe salad, after a summer of pies, but in the immediacy Genevieve is working on a book about eating and cooking

cooking thriftily wasn’t just important for this book, but for the way she lives generally. “Cooking frugally has always been important to me; it’s part

of my make up, not just because of the recent recession. My mum was very hard working, and spent wisely in order to pay for not only the essentials but things she loved, like holidays and outings. Fancy meals and fine dining don’t impress me much – I’d much rather eat simply, using fresh seasonal ingredients cooked well. I’ve inherited mum’s love of travel, and want to save my pennies to take my kids on memory-making adventures! “One of the things that satisfies me most is opening up the

fridge, the cupboard and the freezer, and making something out of what initially looks like not a lot. Odds and ends cooking is my forte. Don’t be afraid to experiment a bit, deviate from recipes, trust your instincts. Taste your food as you cook – if it tastes good, it is good. The same goes for sell by/use by dates

outside – “barbecues, picnics, bonfires, and camp cooking, full of fresh air and adventures with my family, so that will keep me out of mischief for a while”. Plus, she’s developing her TV career again, but this time she is in front of the camera. “I had a few little turns on TV in the last year, with Paul

Hollywood and Jay Rayner for The One Show, but I am currently working with a couple of production companies who are pitching ideas on my behalf,” reveals Gen. “I genuinely think I might have something new to offer – surely I can’t be the only person who’s a bit fed up with the way female cooks seem to be somewhat typecast on the box these days? You know, all perfect make up and pristine kitchens. In the real world, women come in all different guises, and I’m sure there are plenty out there who, like me, are more down-to-earth tomboy-types who can do all the things the boys can do – and better. Besides, why do the Hairy Bikers get to have all the adventures? Surely it’s time for a female cook who’s not afraid to get out of the kitchen and get stuck in and hands on, mud, sweat, tears, and all?” If anyone can do it, Gen can.


INGREDIENTS 100g granulated sugar 1kg Bramley apples 1 tsp cornflour plain flour, for dusting 500g shortcrust pastry beaten egg or a mixture of milk and vegetable oil, to glaze granulated or caster sugar, for sprinkling

METHOD – Measure 200ml cold water into a large saucepan and add the granulated sugar. Bring to a simmer

and then reduce the heat to as low as possible. Peel and core the apples, then chop into 2-3cm dice, dropping them into the hot sweetened water as you go to prevent them from discolouring. Simmer gently, uncovered, for 10 minutes, or until the apples are soft but not completely collapsing. – Mix the cornflour to a paste with 1 tsp cold water and stir it through the apples, then simmer for 1 minute or until slightly

thickened, stirring. Turn off the heat and leave to cool completely – spreading the cooked apples out into a shallow dish will speed up this process considerably. – Once the apples are cold, preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas mark 6, and place a heavy baking sheet in the oven to heat. – On a lightly floured worksurface, cut the pastry into 2 pieces, making 1 piece slightly larger than the other. Roll out the larger piece to a thickness of


about 3mm and use it to line a deep pie plate (about 25cm in diameter) or a 23cm springform cake tin. – Transfer the cooked apples to the pastry case, levelling with a spoon. Brush the rim of the pastry with a little cold water. Roll out the other piece of pastry so it is slightly bigger than the top of the pie plate or tin and lay it over the filling, pressing down firmly onto the bottom piece of pastry to seal the edges. – Trim the edges with a

small sharp knife and then cut a couple of slits in the top of the pie to let the steam out. Brush all over with the beaten egg or milk and oil mixture and sprinkle a little extra sugar over the top. – Slide the pie onto the hot baking sheet in the oven and bake for 40-50 minutes or until the pastry is deep golden brown – as in the pic, on page 75 – and cooked through. Serve hot, warm or cold.

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