For the Nigerian Meat Pie dough
- 1kg (2.2 lbs) Grand Mills All Purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 500g (1.1 lbs) Margarine
- 2 pinches salt
- ½ cup / 125 ml cold water
For the Nigerian Meat Pie filling
- 2 medium potatoes
- 2 medium carrots
- 500g (1.1 lbs.) minced meat
- 1 medium onion
- 2 cooking spoons vegetable oil
- 2 curry cubes
- 1 teaspoon thyme
- 2 tablespoons plain flour
- 1 cup / 250 ml cold water
- Salt to taste
- 1 medium egg
The Nigerian Meat Pie Filling
1 - Peel the potatoes and scrape the carrots, wash and cut these two into tiny cubes.
2 - Wash and slice the onions into tiny pieces.
3 - With your cooker or stove set to medium heat, heat the vegetable oil in a pot, add the diced onions and stir for a bit, add the minced meat and stir vigorously till the minced meat turns pale.
4 - Add 1 cup of water, curry cubes and thyme. Cover the pot and once the contents of the pot start boiling, add the diced carrots and potatoes and cook till everything is well done.
5 - Dissolve 2 tablespoons of Grand Mills All Purpose flour in half cup of cold water and add to the meat pie filling. This tip is so that the meat pie filling does not dry up during baking. It is also what keeps the meat pie filling moist.
6 - Add salt to taste, stir the contents and turn off the heat. Set the meat pie filling aside. Now is the time to prepare the dough for the meat pie.
The Nigerian Meat Pie dough
1 - Put the 1 kg of Grand Mills All Purpose flour in a sizeable bowl; add 2 teaspoons of baking powder and 2 pinches of salt. You really do not need a lot of salt for the meat pie dough. The meat pie will get most of its taste from the filling. Mix these dry ingredients very well.
2 - Use a tablespoon to scoop the margarine in small bits into the bowl of flour. The smaller you make the bits of margarine, the easier it will be for you to rub them into the flour.
3 - Use fingertips to rub the margarine into the flour till the mix becomes like crumbs.
4 - Now, start adding cold water in bits while at the same time folding the mix till a stiff ball of dough is formed. You will be surprised at how small quantity of water you need to get the dough stiff. At most, all you need for the 1 kg of flour is half a cup of water.
5 - Knead the dough very well, put back in the bowl and leave to rest for 5 to 7 minutes. This makes the dough more elastic.
Cut, Fill, Fold and Close
1 - Set your oven to 170°C (335°F) and leave to preheat while you continue with the meat pie.
2 - Rub margarine on the insides of the oven tray and set aside. This is so that the undersides of the meat pies do not burn or stick to the tray during baking.
3 - Break the egg, beat it and set aside, you will need it pretty soon.
4 - Knead the dough some more, roll it out to achieve a 5mm thickness.
5 - Use a cutter, be it the cover of a small pot or a meat pie cutter, to makeround cuts on the rolled out dough.
6 - Remove the excess dough, leaving behind the round cuts.
7 - Scoop some meat pie filling into the center of the round cuts, the quantity should be such that you can comfortably close the dough without overflows. Don't worry if you over-filled the first one, you have many meat pies to fill today so at some point you will know just the right quantity of meat pie filling to scoop into the dough.
8 - Rub the egg on the inside edge of the cut meatpie dough. This is to ensure that your meat pie is perfectly sealed and does not open up while it is being baked.
9 - Fold one part of the dough to meet the other end and use a fork to press the 2 edges together to close tightly. Place your work of art in the oven tray and repeat the previous step till all the cut out dough is exhausted.
10 - Roll out more dough, cut, fill, close and place in the greased oven tray till all the dough is used.
11 - Rub the egg on the meat pies. This gives the meat pie a golden brown look when done.
12 - Set the tray in the preheated oven and bake for 30 to 40 minutes. This time will depend on the type and heating capacity of your oven. For some ovens, the meat pie will be done in half an hour, for some, it may take up to 50 mins. Whatever type of oven you have, the important thing to know is that the best meat pies are the ones baked at medium heat. You can confirm that the meat pie is done when it starts browning. It is alright to open the oven to check this.