Posted by: travelrat | May 31, 2020

More Pies

For those unfamiliar with Cockney rhyming slang, I’d better explain. ‘Porkies’ is short for ‘Pork Pies’ = untruths. And, with all the ‘porkies’ coming from our Seat of Government over the last few days, what better subject could there be for my Sunday miscellany but … Pork Pies?

The pork pie had its beginnings at Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire. This was where they produced the famous Stilton cheese. They only used the curd of the milk, but didn’t waste the whey. This was used to feed the pigs, from whence came the pork to make the equally famous Melton Mowbray pork pie.

Of course, it has countless imitators … some are nearly as good as the ‘original’, others are just the ersatz tasteless ‘growlers’. But, you’re not allowed to call your pie a Melton Mowbray pork pie, unless it’s made in Melton Mowbray, to the traditional recipe.

One noted piemaker is the bakery/shop of Dickinson and Morris. You can, if you wish, see the pies being made. But, you’ll need to be up at Silly o’Clock to see it, for, like most bakeries, they start and finish early. But, if you’d prefer to rise at a more civilised hour they will, on request, show you a video of the process.

The recipe is no secret …  just pork and a little salt and pepper. The spaces are filled with jelly; not that there are many spaces; one of the ways to tell a Melton Mowbray pie from any other is it’s filled to the top with pork. The filling is pink, not grey … ‘the colour of good roast pork’ they told me.

When I was a kid, we were told always eat the pie cold; never reheat it, for that would cause tapeworm and other nasties. I often wonder, was that an old wives tale? I left Dickinson and Morris with one of their pies, still hot from the oven. And, it was delicious!


Responses

  1. I enjoyed your post but I’ve never enjoyed a pork pie. I suppose it just wasn’t part of my childhood and as an adult I could never see the attraction of cold meat in pastry. My loss, no doubt. My husband was a fan of pork pies and he could never understand my love of broccoli and spinach!!

    • Mother went shopping every Thursday, and nearly always brought some back from the local baker. Dad used to love them … with a dab of mustard and a couple of pickled onions. They go well with other things too; see the ‘Pork Pie Ploughman’s’ at https://travelrat.wordpress.com/2011/10/03/a-quick-visit-to-rye/


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