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Chiltern Country Pie

ingredients

serves 6
5/8 cup (100 g) 4 oz dried apricots
1 medium onion
350 g (12 oz) minced beef
4 oz (100 g) pork sausagemeat
4 oz (100 g) streaky bacon or bacon pieces, rinded
2 teaspoons dried Italian seasoning
scant 1/2 (us) cup (100 ml) port
shortcrust pastry made with 8 oz (225 g) flour, 2 oz (50 g) lard and 2 oz (50 g) margarine
parsley sprig to garnish

method

1. Finely chop the apricots or put them through the mincer.

2. Mince together the onion, beef, sausagemeat and bacon.

3. Add the apricots, herbs and port and mix well.

4. Roll out two-thirds of the pastry and use to line a 1 kg (2 lb) loaf tin. Press in the meat filling.

5. Roll out the remaining pastry for the lid and crimp the edges together to seal. Make three slits in the lid.

6. Bake in a preheated moderately hot oven 200°C (400°F) Gas Mark 6 for 10 minutes, then lower the temperature to moderate 180°C (350°) Gas Mark 4 and bake for a further 30 minutes.

7. Loosen the pie with a knife, then leave in the tin to cool. Turn out to serve, garnished with parsley.

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