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Mary Berry’s Humble Pie

A hearty and warming vegetarian pie packed with a creamy, cheesy cauliflower, mushroom and petit pois filling. As seen on Mary Makes It Easy on BBC2.


Hearty, warming and a real treat!

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1 large cauliflower
2 leeks, trimmed and cut into 2cm (¾in) slices
115g (4oz) frozen petit pois
1 x 375g packet ready-rolled puff pasty
Knob of butter
200g (7oz) button, mushrooms, halved
1 egg, beaten
For the cheese sauce:
55g (2oz) butter
55g (2oz) plain flour
450ml (¾ pint) hot milk
2 tsp Dijon mustard
115g (4oz) mature Cheddar, coarsely grated
55g (2oz) Parmesan, coarsely grated

Essential kit

You will need a fairly deep 28cm (11in) diameter dish or a 3-pint dish.


Preheat the oven to 200c/180c Fan/Gas 6. You will need a fairly deep 28cm (11in) diameter dish or a 3-pint dish.

Break the cauliflower into fairly small, even-sized florets. Some of the smaller leaves can be chopped into pieces.

Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. Add the leeks and boil for 4 minutes. Add the cauliflower florets and leaves, and bring back to a boil for 3 minutes until just tender. Drain and run under cold water to stop the cooking. Drain well and set aside.

To make the cheese sauce, melt the butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Sprinkle in the flour and stir for 1 minute. Gradually add the hot milk, whisking until thickened. Stir in the mustard, Cheddar and Parmesan, and season well with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Leave to cool for 5 minutes.

Heat the butter over a high heat, pan fry the mushrooms for 3 minutes until golden and season with salt and pepper, set aside to cool. Add all the cold vegetables and frozen peas to the cheese sauce, stir and check the seasoning. Spoon into the pie dish.

Unroll the pastry and remove a 7cm (2¾in) strip from the short side and chill in the fridge. Roll out the remaining pastry to slightly bigger that the top of your pie dish. Brush beaten egg around the edge of the dish, then place the pastry on top and press down on the edges to seal. Trim any excess pastry with a sharp knife and make a small slit in the centre for the steam to escape. Brush the top with beaten egg.

Roll out the reserved strip of pastry to be a bit thinner, then roll it up tightly. Using a sharp knife, slice to make long thin strips. Unravel and dip them into the egg wash, then arrange on top of the pie, in a random pattern. Bake in the preheated oven for about 40–45 minutes, until the pastry is golden and the sauce is bubbling around the edges.

Mary’s Tips: The pie can be made, left unglazed and kept covered in the fridge for up to 24 hours ahead. Not suitable for freezing.

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