So I’ve been home on Maternity leave for a few months now and I haven’t managed to achieve all the culinary milestones I set myself before I started my leave. I was supposed to be the Nigerian answer to Nigella Lawson and Mary berry by the end of my time at home.
It’s suddenly dawned on me that I am nowhere near achieving these goals, what with looking after a baby and toddler 24/7. I’ve decided to just go for it now, whether or not I’ve got the time, it’s now or never!
The way I’m carrying on, you’d think I love cooking….far from it. I wouldn’t go as far as to use ‘love’, I enjoy it, when I know what I’m doing, but most times, I cook so that my family can eat. That’s about it.
I’ve noticed a new urge to bake and try new recipes….be adventurous with my cooking lately. It probably has something to do with getting married and becoming a mum, I remember my days in Uni were filled with many a trip to the popular ‘bukas’ (God bless Alhaja Ayo!!) in Ilorin and fast food restaurants rather than take the time to cook.
I was going to start with baking cakes and cup cakes but my family friend who is the only person I know who makes meat pie just for the fun of it came visiting the other day. Normally, I grovel to get her to bring me some when she comes over or when we go over but this time, she had a better idea…she brought everything I needed to make it round and showed me how it’s done.
This was all well and good had I been paying close attention to every stage of what she was showing me, but at the time, we were embroiled in some particularly interesting piece of gossip so I got distracted.
So come Monday, I decided this was the day to try my hands at making meat pie. Nigerian meat pie is quite different from British pie, we don’t pour the filling into a baking dish and cover up with the dough, we do it more like you would a Cornish pastie but with less fillings I think.
I am quite proud to announce that I managed to make a batch without anyone in my household coming down with food poisoning. Not only were they edible, they were tasty too, although you have to excuse the funny shapes and sizes…I lost my way a few times and panicked!
I’ve learnt a few lessons now though
1. You need enough butter to make the dough richer in taste
2. Use water sparingly, too much water makes the dough hard
3. Don’t freak out when the dough feels funny at first…you need to knead it lovingly to get the non stick texture ;-)
4. Don’t roll the dough too thinly, it makes sealing the pie difficult and lifting it unto a pan almost impossible!
5. Last but not least, use proper equipment i.e. A proper rolling-pin rather than a bottle of groundnut!…:-D
If you want a proper meat pie recipe and how to guide…follow this link http://www.nigerianfoodtv.com/2012/11/how-to-make-nigerian-meat-pie.html
Here’s the product of my labour…it actually wasn’t too bad…x