“ Type: Other Ready Meals / Food quality: Organic food „
First of all I had better put you in the picture. I am a northern lass moved south but my roots are in Lancashire and I was brought up on what my daughter calls "a good farmer's dinner!". We always had filling meals full of carbohydrates when I was little partly due to the fact that my mum worked and my grannie who lived with us did a lot of home cooking. One of my loves in those days was pies and we had many of them!
Alas today voices in my head always shout "cholesterol" whenever I see a pie these days not to mention middle age spread, and the trouble with being an x nurse is that you know too much and it sometimes gets in the way of a good dinner!
So when I discovered Clive's pies a few years ago I was in heaven! At last a healthy pie! -well maybe not to be eaten every day but a more healthy version than some!
I'll tell you a little about Clive so you get the background of how these tasty pies came into production. In 1986 a bakery in Devon called Clive's began producing vegetarian organic pies for the first time. They were inspired by many world recipes and the fillings were varied and original. Most of the pies were vegan and all were made with love which is the motto of the company.
In 2003 Clive retired and the bakery was taken over by Sally and Chris who now make all the pies just as before and have extended the ranges. I have to tell you they make delicious cakes too but I'll leave that delight for another review!
The photo at the top of this page show the Organic Mexican Chilli pie but there are many in the range. To give you some examples I have listed them below:
Greek Lentil and Olive
Rosemary and potato
Some of them are gluten free too so great if you are a coeliac.
You can have a look at the website at www.clivespies.co.uk.
The best place I have found to buy these is from the mail order co-operative Goodness Direct where the price varies from £2.20 to £2.40 each depending on which one you select. I have a special review devoted to this website and the website address is www.goodnessdirect.co.uk. You can also purchase mail order from:
www.ownonline.co.uk or www.mummydeli.com
You can also buy them from local independent health food retailers and some farm shops.
The pie in the photo, the Mexican Chilli version has these ingredients:
Carrots,tomatoes,100% and 81% stone ground flour, non hydrogenated palm fat, kidney beans, onions, sweet corn, cabbage ,non hydrogenated vegetable margarine, peppers, courgettes, tomato paste, vegetable oil, sea salt, fresh garlic spices and herbs.
One of my favourite pies in the range is The Greek Lentil and Olive version. It reminds me of sunny Greek holidays sitting in tavernas watching the sunset. It's a real Shirley Valentine experience! They are all filling and the great thing is they are frozen so fantastic for a quick meal. All you have to do is cook them -no need to defrost! I usually do a green vegetable with them like broccoli or kale. You don't really need potatoes but if you are really starving mash goes really well. As they are wholemeal I think the pastry can be slightly dry and my daughter likes some sauce or gravy to go with them, so if you prefer it you can top with any sauce you like depending on the flavour you have.
One of the great things we have now is the ability to support small producers who have ethical standards and who work very hard to produce a really good specialised product. I think Clive's Pies are one of these.
For any vegetarians out there who may not have heard of Zedz foods these were a small independent bakery who were making delicious cakes and savouries from their bakery in Manchester. Sadly they have had to close due to the rising costs of ingredients and running costs and an even greater competition from so many long life cakes stocked by major supermarkets. Clive's foods are in the process of making as many of their recipes as they can and so one small producer has helped another.
The sad fact is with the recession times are hard for so many of us, and I am very often spotted in a supermarket buying something from the value range usually inspired by reading some excellent Dooyoo reviews. Still though I have a passion for supporting the small producers and for keeping Britain's traditions alive in letting new ventures begin. I think people should have the ability to start and maintain a company from an idea and nothing but hard work and vision.
I know we all love supermarkets, I know I do, but they are choking so many producers who make excellent products.
Thankfully Clive's is alive and well and producing delicious pies!
They are constantly improving and expanding their range and have recently introduced some one pot meals.
So next time you fancy a pie try Clive's -I think you'll enjoy them!
Vegetarian filled pastry.