Sometimes the best-tasting food is also the simplest. This recipe was yet another from one of my many dusty W.I.pamphlets from the mid 20th century. It was so brief it barely qualified as a paragraph, let alone a recipe, so I’ve added some detail below to help things along. In essence, you can count the number of ingredients in this pie on one hand: pastry, egg, bacon, seasoning. The pie in the picture above also contains diced tomato, which I thought would add freshness; it did to a certain extent, but not to the degree I was hoping, and in fact, the ‘plain’ bacon and egg pie was tastier. Alas, my cross-section photo for this pie (see below) wasn’t as visually arresting as the one above, so I decided to lure you with the picture above, then set the record straight. You can choose whichever version appeals most.
Also, I’ve mentioned them before, but I just LOVE my small cake/tart tins I found at my local The Range (4 x 10cm diameter pans for £2.50). They have a small lip on the side, which makes them great for tarts or, in this case, for firmly attaching the pastry lids of pies. This is not a paid endorsement – I just think they are a bargain and am sharing.
You can be as pro-active or as lazy as you like with these pies – make everything from scratch or buy it in if you’re pressed for time. Personally, I like to hover, metaphorically, between the two: make the pastry for the base, but buy a sheet of ready rolled puff pastry for the top, on account of life too short etc. The cornflour shortcrust is dry and crisp, and the buttery, flaky, puff pastry is both delicious and a fantastic contrast. Once the pans are lined, sprinkle over a little cooked bacon, crack in a whole egg and add the lid and you’re done!
OK, yes, you should add a sprinkling of fresh parsley too.
And pepper. Of course pepper.
Well OBVIOUSLY crimping the edges is a good idea.
And it goes without saying that egg-yolk wash will give both colour and shine.
I’ll come in again.
AMONGST OUR WEAPONRY are such diverse elements as….
Oops! Wrong sketch.
Once the pans are lined, sprinkle over a little cooked bacon and some fresh parsley, season with black pepper, crack in a whole egg, a little more parsley and pepper, add the lid, crimp the pastry edges, wash over with beaten egg and you’re DONE!
The quantities are up to you and however many you’re catering for. The suggestions below are for 4 individual pies. Any excess pastry, of either sort, can be frozen for later, as can the cooked pies, for up to a month.
Bacon and Egg Pies
1 batch cornflour shortcrust – scroll down on this page
1 sheet of puff pastry
100g lean bacon
4 large eggs
4-6 tablespoons of chopped, fresh parsley
coarse-ground black pepper
4 tomatoes – skinned, de-seeded and diced finely – optional
1 large yolk – for glazing
- Pre-heat the oven to 200°C/180°C Fan.
- Roll out the shortcrust pastry to a thickness of 5mm.
- Grease and line your tart tins with the shortcrust pastry, making sure to ease the pastry into the bottom edge of the pan, not stretch it. Leave excess pastry hanging over the sides of the tin and chill in the fridge until required.
- Chop the bacon into small dice and cook until just done. No browning. Drain on kitchen roll.
- Remove pies from fridge.
- Scatter the bacon in the bottom of the pies.
- Add a sprinkling of chopped parsley and a little back pepper. No need for salt, as the bacon is salty enough. Add the tomatoes if using.
- Crack an egg into each pie. If you want the yolk to be dead centre, you could clear a space amongst the bacon, but it’s not really necessary.
- Add more parsley and black pepper.
- Cut four squares of puff pastry, large enough to cover the pies.
- Brush the rims of the pies with water then lay over the puff pastry squares.
- Press firmly around the edges, then trim the excess pastry with a sharp knife.
- Crimp the edges of the pies for a decorative effect.
- Whisk the yolk with a tablespoon of water and brush the pie tops liberally.
- Cut three or four small vent holes, NOT in the middle – you don’t want to break the yolk inside.
- Bake for 15-20 minutes until the top is puffed and golden and the underside crisp.
- Enjoy hot, warm or cold.
 NOBODY expects the Spanish Inquisition! Least of all my husband who read all of the above with a blank expression then said “I don’t get it.” *sigh*