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Quick & easy lunch box pies without the pastry
Member Name: buckhysen
Date: 04/03/09, updated on 04/03/09 (278 review reads)
Advantages: Quick,easy & cheap to make,fantastic lunch box alternative,can be eaten hot or cold, can be healthy
Disadvantages: Not very healthy if you start adding unhealthy ingredients.
If your children, partner or even yourself are bored with the same old things in your packed lunch every day then this could just be your answer.
The variations are endless and they are quick, easy and cheap to make.
Not only can these be made for packed lunches but you can also make larger one's in cake tins and pie dishes for the entire family as snacks or part of a meal.
What is great about these also is that they are designed to be eaten hot or cold.
I have made many variations of this but here I will review the Egg and bacon pies.
I say pies, but this is the cheaters way of making them :o)
For the egg and bacon pies you will need....
2 or 3 rashers of bacon
Bread (Whatever kind you like. White, Brown, Multigrain, etc)
Salt & Pepper (Although I don't use salt)
Mixed herbs (Optional)
Bowl for mixing
Individual cake cases or cake tins
Note - The cake cases are only recommended with white bread
OR Cake tin/pie dish for family sized pie
Knife and a fork
As I said, you can make this on a larger scale but here are the instructions for the individual pies.
1. Grill the bacon to how you like it and then cut into small pieces (Small enough to fit into a cake case/tin).
2. Whilst the bacon is cooking cut the crusts off your bread, you will need one slice for every pie you make. I usually make 6 at a time, so 6 slices of bread.
3. Pat down lightly on each slice of bread so that it is not quite so fluffy and so that it is a little easier to bend and mould.
4. If using white bread, mould each slice of bread into a cake case (Or cake tin, although grease cake tin first) and push the sides (Not the bottom) into the case to help it stick/stay in place, cut off any of the bread sticking out as it will burn and use it to fill in any small gaps around the sides. Place on a baking tray.
Note - White bread seems to be a lot easier to get into cake cases... If using Wholemeal or Wholegrain bread it is better to use cake tins, although they do tend to stick so you need to grease the bottom of tins well.
5. Once you have your bread in your cake tins/cases, then equally place the cut up bacon into each case, you only need 2-4 small pieces in each case... not even half full.
6. When this is done, crack the 4 eggs into a bowl and whisk with a fork.
7. Add roughly a tablespoon of Worcester Sauce (But generally add as much or as little as you like) and a sprinkle of mixed herbs and black pepper to taste, and mix in.
8. Pour the egg mixture into each case, almost to the top. If you think you are not quite going to have enough egg mixture then add a tiny amount of milk (Don't worry if you have any left over).
9. Place pies in the oven at 160/170 degrees (Gas mark 3) for about 15-20 minutes.
10. To check if egg has cooked, take out of oven and check with a knife in the centre. When you do take them out of the oven leave to stand for 5 minutes as they will continue cooking.
These can be eaten straight away when hot, or taken out of cases/tin and kept in the fridge for packed lunches and snacks.
They really are very tasty and kids absolutely love them. They are a fantastic way to add something different to a lunch box, and if you use brown bread (Like I do) and use low fat margarine to grease the tins they are quite healthy as well compared to a bag of crisps or a bar of chocolate.
What's great about these is that you can make any number of variations. I've made Egg & corned beef, Egg & Ham, Baked beans and corned beef, etc, etc.
You can even add mince with gravy with mashed potato on top for mini Shepherds Pies.
I would suggest if you want to put grated cheese on top then it's better to put it on after the pies come out of the oven, then stick it under the grill for a couple of minutes to melt/brown.
As I briefly mentioned you can easily make larger one's of these in a larger cake tin or oven dish and serve with beans, vegetables, mashed potatoes, etc and have as a family meal.
It all depends on the fillings, your oven type and the size of the pie/s you're making, but to make 6 Egg and Bacon pies takes approx. 10 minutes to prepare and cook the bacon, then a further 15-20 minutes in the oven.
Again it depends on what you use and how far your imagination will stretch. But for 6 Egg & Bacon pies the cost is approx.
2 x Rashers of Bacon - Around 60p
6 Slices of bread - 20p? (I use Tesco wholemeal for these, which easily does the job at 55p a loaf)
4 x Eggs - 40p
Mixed herbs, salt & pepper, butter, etc - 5p?
Which means you can make 6 of these for around £1.20, not bad for a week of school lunches per child.
Obviously the cost will go up or down depending on the ingredients you use but at the very least they are a wonderful alternative to the usual boring lunch box food.
My girls adore these, I've even made them for friends at times.
Incidentally, with the leftover crusts and any of the egg mixture you can put a tablespoon of Olive oil into a pan, cut up the crusts into cubes and fry them.
Take out when crispy, scramble up the egg mixture and eat together whilst waiting for the pies to cook :o)
Or simply cut the crusts into cubes and fry up for croûtons when you need them in soups.
Despite being a cheap and quick alternative to pastry pies, these are surprisingly tasty, especially as you experiment with ingredients, etc to put in them.
Summary: Kids will love these lunch box alternatives!
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