Nigerian meat pie recipe is a type of snack that is common in almost all countries in the world including Nigeria, Ghana, South Africa, Zimbabwe, Australia, Europe, New Zealand, Canada as well as the United Kingdom. It is a pie which contains a filling of meat and also includes other savory ingredients.
The origin of meat pie is disputed. Although, some study shows that it is found in the Neolitic era around 9500 BC. It was also said that the ancient Egyptians had some diets which included basic pies which were made from wheat, oat, barley, as well as the which is usually filled with quality amount of honey and properly baked over hot coals.
The ancient Greek however made use of a flour water paste which resembles a pie pastry which they filled with meat. The pies which are usually cooked under hot coals, baked or perhaps fried. The Romans later adopted this method by using a variety of meats as well as fishes. Not only that, they also went further by using oysters, mussels as well as lampreys as filling which they mixed with flour, oil and water to make the crust. The pastry cover was not meant to be consumed, hence, it was disposed.
In countries like the northern Europe, their cooks made the pastry with the use of fats such as lard and butter so as to make stiff dough in order to hold an upright pie. These pastery dishes were however called coffyns or coffins which simply means a box or a basket. According to study, it was said that the coffins were savory meat pies with tall crusts or pastry which is usually straight sided with sealed on floors and lids. The open crust pastries, that is the pastries without tops or lids where known as traps. In these pies were assorted meats of all kinds and sauce components which were baked more like a modern casserole without pan. This simply means that the crust itself served as the pan with its pastry inedible and tough. The crust were made very thick so that it could withstand several hours of baking. Some researchers however believes that the almost inedible and tough crust was given to the man and maid servants while their Lords and Ladies ate the edible contents. Hence, the pastry became a well known dish in the medieval times. By the 14th century however, it came to be called pie or pye. The origin of the word is disputed but it can be closely associated with megpie which is also called pie. This is because both were spotted or perhaps because various researchers believed it was so.
Basically, the Italians and the French began to specialize in redefining the pastry of the pie making it tastier and flakier. They did this by adding butter, rolling it and carefully folding it into a dough. Hence, in 1440, the Paris pastry guild was well known and they started to expand their product all over the world and so it gave rise to the modern day crust which is now being used.
The early Christian missionaries and explorers also helped the spread of the meat-based pie dish across the globe. So rapid was the spread that the English Pilgrims of the North American colonies also brought the recipes across the ocean with them. The crust of the pie proved to be very useful for them as it was used to preserve food during the long winter months in America. But the pie was not considered well known until the early 1800s. Today in America, meat pies have lost their popularity as it has been replaced with sweet pies.
Research has shown that the Nigerian meat pie is very similar to the Jamaican beef patty. This is because it can be either baked or fried depending and the filling can be majorly from minced beef with some potatoes as well as carrots. A little bit of onions and tomatoes is also added.
The Latin American meat empanadas may be pies or more like pasties which is so unlike the Nigerian meat pie as different pastry shells as well as fillings are used. Although there are some similarities as it can be either baked or fried just like the Nigerian meat pie. It is usually filled with lots of onion as well as green or red pepper together with some meat or fish.
There are other wonderful varieties of meat pie. They include
1. The British meat pie
2. The French-Canadian meat pie
3. The Australian and NZ meat pie.
This article will only teach you how to make the Nigerian meat pie recipe in details
How To Make Healthy Nigerian Meat Pie Recipe
The Nigerian meat pie recipe can come in different unique shapes yet it is usually yummy, moised and contains minced meat, potatoes as well as carrot filling. The filling which comprises the carrots, meats and potatoes are adequately seasoned which gives the meat pie the yummy taste your taste buds crave.
The amount of ingredients you purchase will depend on two sure facts: first is the number of meat pies you want to make and second is the size of the meat pie you wish to make. However, the number of meat pies you can make also depends largely on the diameter of the meat pie cutter you choose to use. For instance, when using a cutter that is 8 inches, that is 20cm in diameter, it will produce nothing less than 10 meat pies with the ingredients listed below:
1. 1kg (that is 8 cups) plain flour (Should be all purpose flour)
2. 2 teaspoons baking powder
3. 500g (1.1 lbs) margarine
4. 2 pinches salt to taste
5. ½ cup, that is 125 ml / 4.2 oz cold water
For the filling:
1. 2 medium Irish potatoes
2. 2 medium sized carrots
3. 500g (1.1 lbs) minced meat
4. 1 medium sized onion bulb
5. 2 cooking spoons vegetable oil
6. 2 cubes seasoning (preferably Knorr cubes)
7. 1 teaspoon thyme
8. 2 tablespoons plain flour
9. 1 cup, that is 250 ml / 8.4 oz cold water
10. Salt to taste
1 medium sized egg
All these ingredients can be purchased from the supermarket or any grocery store around you. It can as well be gotten from the local markets.
Step by step instructions:
(First, The Meat Pie Filling)
1. To make the Nigerian Meat pie recipe filling, what you need to do is to peel the Irish potatoes and scrape the carrots as well. Once that is done, wash and cut them into tiny cubes.
2. Wash and slice the onion bulb into tiny pieces as well and keep in a separate pan.
3. With your cooker or if you’d be using a stove perhaps, set to medium heat and heat the vegetable oil in a clean pot. Once that is done, add the diced onions and stir for a little while then add the minced meat, only this time, stir vigorously until the minced meat turns pale.
4. Add just 1 cup of water, your seasoning cubes as well as your thym then cover the pot. Once the contents of the pot starts to boil, add the diced carrots as well as the potatoes and cook till everything is properly done.
5. Dissolve just 2 tablespoons of plain flour in half cup of cold water and add the meat pie filling. This is just so that the meat pie filling does not dry up when you start baking. The cold water is also what keeps the meat pie filling moist.
6. Add a pinch of salt to give it taste then stir the contents and turn off the heat. Once you have done that, set the meat pie filling aside.
It is time to prepare the dough for the meat pie.
Making the dough requires your full concentration
1. First of all, put your 1 kg of flour in a bowl then add 2 teaspoons of baking powder as well as 2 pinches of salt to taste then mix. Only little amount of salt is needed as the pie will get its taste from the filling.
2. Use a tablespoon to take out the margarine in small bits and add it to the bowl of flour. Note that the smaller you make the bits of margarine, the easier to rub them into the flour.
3. Now use your finger tips to rub the margarine into the flour till the mix becomes like crumbs.
Note: You are not allowed to use butter in place of margarine for the meat pie dough as butter is too hard and it will make it difficult for you to mix it with the flour to achieve the crumbly look.
4. Start adding your cold water bit by bit and at the same time, fold the mix till a stiff ball of dough is formed. All you need for the 1 kg of flour is half a cup of water at most.
5. Be sure to knead the dough very well then put back in the bowl and leave to rest for nothing less than 5 to 7 minutes as this makes the dough elastic.
6. Cut a portion, fill, fold and close it. Once this is done, set your oven to 170°C (335°F) and allow it to preheat while you continue with the meat pie.
7. Rub margarine on the insides of the oven tray and set it aside. This is done so that the undersides of the meat pies does not burn or stick to the tray while baking.
8. Break your egg, beat it then set it aside as you will need it later.
9. Knead the dough some more and then roll it out. This is to achieve a 5mm thickness.
10. With the use of a cutter, make round cuts on the rolled out dough and remove the excess leaving only the round cuts.
11. You are to scoop some meat pie filling into the center of the round cuts. Make sure that the quantity is such that you can comfortably close the dough without overflows.
12. Rub the egg on the inside edge of the already cut out meat pie dough. This is done to make sure that the meat pie is perfectly sealed and does not open up while undergoing the baking process.
13. Carefully fold one part of the dough to meet the other end and use a fork to press the 2 edges together so as to close it tightly. Now place your work in the oven tray and repeat the previous step till all the cut out dough is exhausted.
14. Once you are done, rub the egg on the meat pies as this gives the meat pie a golden brown look when done.
15. Set the tray in the already preheated oven and bake for at least 30 to 40 minutes. Note that the time solely depends on the type and heating capacity of your oven as some ovens are more faster than others. So therefore, you can confirm that the meat pie is done when it starts getting brown. Feel free to open the oven to check this.
This is how to make the Nigerian meat pie. Although, it may seem like a long process due to how the procedures have been explained here but when the practical is carried out, you will see for yourself that it is very straightforward so why worry about the amount of time it will take to prepare it? Only the best things deserves your time!
Finally, it is necessary to state that you are free to use half the quantity of the above stated ingredients that is if you do not want to make as many Nigerian meat pies.