|Happiness depends on ourselves – Aristotle
Healthy Appetites depend on Happy hearts – Sinead
♡◦°˚°◦.¸¸.◦°˚ˆ*As the cold weather sweeps in like a rip tide and night time creeps upon us quicker than we know, the gentle hum and warmth of a kitchen offers a sweet welcoming call and comfort for cold tootsies. Bright colours and deep flavours, soothing suppers and crunchy textures all await an enthusiastic beautiful cook!
This volcanic vegetable pie will bring brightness and a piquant glow to your evenings. There is something very special about Beetroot, beyond its piercing staining hue, its delicate sweetness springs from the filo pastry, complimented beautifully by the thyme and goats cheese. I invite you to play around with cheese combinations, experiment with your favourite cheese, following the quantities mentioned, to create your very own poignantly purple pie.
Beetroots are now in season, so instead of the usual pickling and using them in salad recipes, try this wonderfully warming Beet Pie, that bursts with delicate flavour, savoury sweetness and texture. It would be a very pleasing vegetarian option for a Christmas feast, though one may find that even the most ardent meat eater is spellbound by this delicately crisp delight. I also serve it as a starter, though cut it into small portions when doing so.
Special Tip – Buy a brush. Food preparation is not dissimilar to any creative craft; with the right tools you’ll find most things effortless. The buttery brush strokes this recipe involves require a little brush, there are many kinds on the market, my favourite are these, enjoying finding your favourite.
In Ancient Greece, millennia ago, beetroots were presented on a silver platter to Apollo at Delphi, or so the legend goes. Today they should be presented likewise, perhaps on golden trays, to pregnant ladies and anyone who’s struggling with winter blues. Beetroots are a wonderful source of folic acid, they also help prevent nausea and contain the bioactive agent betain, which boosts healthy liver function. What makes beetroot so bloomin’ beautiful? Betacyanin of course, it’s the pigment that gives beetroot its amazing antioxidant properties, so why wait any longer? Father Christmas, or whoever your Santa Clause may be, has lots to do, so give yourself a gift and buy a bunch of beetroot and the other ingredients mentioned, you’ll be surprised at the exquisite taste, I promise.
Lots of love,
Beautiful Beetroot Pie
* Open filo pastry pack when ready to use it! This will prevent it from drying out and make it easier to handle.
*You may use cooked Beetroot to reduce prep time, this is a good idea the first time you cook the pie as it will make the whole dish seem much simpler.
Uncooked Beetroot, 500g grated (squeeze out excess liquid in a clean cloth)
Red onion 1 grated
Nutmeg, grated ½ tsp
Thyme Sprigs, 4 leaves only
Eggs, 4 medium
Goats cheese, 200g crumbled
Cottage cheese, 200g
Filo pastry, 1 packet
Butter, 40g melted
Horseradish sauce, 1 tbsp
Creme fraiche, 1 tbsp
PRE-HEAT oven to 180’ gas 4.
WHISK eggs in a large bowl.
STIR grated beetroot, red onion, nutmeg and thyme into the eggs and mix well until fully combined.
ADD feta and cottage cheese and mash until thoroughly combined.
SALT loves beetroot, so season generously!
MELT butter in a small saucepan.
BRUSH melted butter over (8in x 10in) 20cm x 28cm baking tray.
UNWRAP filo pastry and keep under a damp cloth, this will stop the pastry drying out.
LAYER one sheet of filo on top of the baking tray and brush with butter.
REPEAT process with half of the filo sheets, roughly 5/6 sheets, depending on how many are in the pack, so that you have an even base for you beautiful pie.
SPOON beetroot mixture over the filo and spread evenly with the back of a spoon.
LAYER remaining filo sheets in the same fashion as before.
SCORE lines, using a sharp knife, over the pastry to resemble a chess board, take care not to cut below the filling. (This will make it much easier to cut once cooked)
SPRINKLE a few droplets of water over the pastry to give a lovely crispy finish.
BAKE for 45 minutes, until golden and crisp.
LEAVE to cool slightly before serving, or serve cold, depending on the time of year:)
SERVE with some Horseradish cream.
STIR crème fraiche to the same amount of Horseradish.
SPOON alongside your beautiful pie. This is a truly delicious dish worth savouring.