Seafood

Shrimp Pot Pie for π (Pi) Day!

Shrimp Pot Pie

Excuse me while I geek out because today is π (Pi) Day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

3.14 – you know it!

Shrimp Pot Pie

To be honest, I can’t say I love math……. but I can’t help but adore kitschy humor.

And I love pie.

Shrimp Pot Pie

So if given the opportunity to celebrate pie–I’ll take it!

Last year I celebrated the mathematical constant with these Mixed Berry Hand Pies that were not only scrumptious but just so darn cute and portable.

Shrimp Pot Pie

This year I opted for the savory route and made a batch of Shrimp Pot Pie. Luscious, decadent shrimp filling topped with a flaky puff pastry crust.

Shrimp Pot Pie

So good, so easy, so π-licous.

Happy π (Pi) Day!!!

_______________________________________

Shrimp Pot Pie

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1½ cup diced celery
1½ cup diced carrots
2 cups chopped leeks, thoroughly washed and dried
1 tablespoon minced garlic
¼ teaspoon red chili flakes
5 sprigs fresh thyme
2 cups diced red potatoes
½ cup white wine
1 pound shrimp, peeled and deveined
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
¼ cup flour
2 cups seafood stock
½ cup heavy cream
kosher salt
black pepper
1 cup frozen peas
½ cup chopped fresh parsley
1 egg, beaten
1 package frozen puff pastry

In a pot, melt the butter with the olive oil over medium heat. Add the celery, carrots, leeks and garlic. Sauté until softened but not browned—about 5-7 minutes. Add the red chili flakes, thyme sprigs, potatoes and cook for 2-3 minutes, stirring frequently.

Pour in the wine . Continue simmering until the wine has reduced and nearly evaporated. While the wine cooks, sprinkle the cayenne pepper over the shrimp and toss until evenly coated. Next, whisk the flour and seafood stock together in a bowl.

When the wine has evaporated, pour in the flour/stock mixture and stir while the liquids come to a soft boil. Continue cooking and stirring over medium heat for 5 minutes. Pour in the cream and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes until the mixture has thickened to the desired consistency.

Pull the pot off the heat and remove the thyme sprigs. Stir in the shrimp, 1 teaspoon kosher salt (more to taste), ½ teaspoon black pepper (more to taste), frozen peas and fresh parsley.

Ladle the filling into a casserole dish or other types of individual ramekins/ovenproof dishes. Brush the outside edges of the dishes/ramekins with the beaten egg. Trim the puff pastry sheets about ½ inch larger than the tops of each of the dishes/ramekins. Cover each dish/ramekin with the puff pastry and press around the edges to seal.

Brush the tops of each of the pies with the beaten egg and use a sharp knife to make small slits on top. Place the pie/pies on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil and transfer to an oven that has been preheated to 400 degrees F.

Bake the pie/pies for 30-40 minutes or until the crusts are golden brown.

Advertisements
Desserts/Pastries

Mixed Berry Hand Pies for π Day!

Mixed Berry Hand Pies

HOLY COW!!! I almost missed it—again! But thanks to my fab Twitter feed, I was reminded in the nick of time that today is…….. π (Pi) Day!!!!

Yup, the mathematical constant π (Pi) that is approximately 3.14159 is celebrated every year on March 14th. 3/14 = 3.14 Get it????? Oh so clever!

Mixed Berry Hand Pies

So, what does one do to celebrate π Day? Well– I guess if you’re a big math fanatic, you may spend your day racing through equations or preparing for the next Math Olympics. OR you can spend your day baking and eating delicious pies.

Seeing how I’m rather mathematically inept, I chose the latter and made these fun Mixed Berry Hand Pies. Crispy, flaky crust filled with tart fresh berries. Scrumptious!

And in case you’re feeling extra naughty today, you can choose to deep fry the hand pies instead of baking them. Why the π not?

Mixed Berry Hand Pies

And with that Friends, Happy π (Pi) Day!!!

ps. Obviously I was too busy shoving my face with these hand pies to wipe my fingers clean of powdered sugar before snapping this pic. Ooops!

_________________________________________

Mixed Berry Hand Pies
Makes 10-12 pies

Ingredients:

2 cups diced fresh strawberries
1 cup diced fresh blackberries
½ teaspoon lemon zest
seeds from ½ vanilla bean pod
1½ tablespoons sugar (more if berries are too tart)
1½ teaspoons cornstarch
flour for dusting
1 pound pie dough*
1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon heavy cream or water
powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or silicon mat.

In a bowl, gently mix together the berries, lemon zest, vanilla beans, sugar and cornstarch. Depending on the sweetness of the berries, more sugar may be added. Set aside.

Dust a workspace with flour and roll the pie dough to about 1/8 inch thickness. Use a 5-6 inch round cookie cutter to cut circles out of the dough. Place about 2 spoonfuls of the berry mixture in the center of a pastry circle. Fold over the dough to cover the filling and gently press the edges together to seal. You may also use a fork to crimp the edges to secure the seal. Repeat with the remaining dough.

Transfer the hand pies to the baking sheet. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and heavy cream/water. Brush the tops of the hand pies with the egg wash and make a small nick with a sharp knife on top to allow the steam to release while the pies bake.

Bake the hand pies for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Don’t worry if some of the berry filling bubbles out. Once done, allow the hand pies to cool on racks for about 10 minutes. Dust the hand pies with powdered sugar and serve.

Fried Option: If you opt to deep fry your hand pies, do not brush them with the egg wash or cut an air vent in the filled pies. Once formed, refrigerate them for at least 20 minutes. Fill a heavy bottom pot with 2 inches of vegetable oil and heat to 375 degrees F. In batches, fry the hand pies for 1-2 minutes on each side or until golden brown. Transfer the hand pies to cooling racks to drain excess oil. After 5 minutes, dust them with powdered sugar and serve.

*When it comes to pie dough, I’m a big fan of using Cook’s Illustrated’s Foolproof Pie Dough recipe or Martha Stewart’s Patee Brisee recipe. Both yield great results AND they’re both ideal to make double batches of to freeze when you need them.