Updated: Oct 4, 2020
As a Lancashire girl pies are my absolutely go to comfort food. We’ve recently been eating more and more Vegetarian Food and this age old recipe from the back of my cupboard is the ultimate comfort food. The rainbow is optional, but it certainly brightens up the Manchester Rainy Days!
A loose bottomed pie tin, mine is 23cm but I recommend 20cm if you want enough pastry left to make a proper rainbow! (I ran out in the picture above)
For the Pastry:
50g Unsalted Butter , Cold, cubed
50g Lard, Cold, cubed just like my nana used to make it (or 100g of Butter if you are making the Vegetarian version)
200g Self-Raising Flour
A pinch of salt
2-3 tablespoons of cold water.
For the filling
2 large brown onions
Salt and White Pepper (Black does not work)
300g Lancashire Mature Cheddar Cheese.
Egg for the egg wash.
How to make it.
To make the pastry sift the flour and salt into a mixing bowl, add the cubed butter and lard if using and rub through with the tips of your fingers, until it is all combined and the flour resembles more of a sandy texture. Add water little by little and bring together to a smooth pastry, flour, cover and chill until around 30 minutes before you assemble the pie whilst you make the filling.
To make the filling
Slice the onions as finely as possible, add a knob of butter to a pan with a lid, sauté the onions foe a couple of minutes before leaving them to soften with the lid on for around 10 minutes. We don’t want them brown, but nice and translucent. Add the water, salt and pepper, give it a good stir and leave to cook on a medium heat uncovered until the water has evaporated, check regularly as they will stick and burn quickly at this point. Set the onions aside to cool.
Now set the oven to 180 degrees centigrade, take the pastry out of the fridge and roll out I usually allow just under two thirds for the base and a third for the top. Grease and flour the tin. Line the tin with pastry, and prick the base with a fork.
At this point if you want to blind bake the pie for a super crispy bottom place the base with pastry on in the freezer for around ten minutes, take
it out of the freezer line with baking parchment and then fill with rice (or baking beads if you have them) bake for around 10 minutes.
Or if you cant be bothered with any of that faffing, my nana never did then just go straight ahead and add the filling. Layer your filling, half the onions, half the cheese and then repeat. Brush the top edge of your pie with egg wash and then add your top, gently pressing to fix it. Add a few slits in the top and egg wash the whole thing, then bake in the oven for around 40 minutes until golden brown and slightly bubbling on top.
To add a rainbow from any spare pastry knead a little natural food colouring into the left over dough, shape, add on top and then egg wash.
The end result is delicious and if you haven’t ever tried a cheese and onion pie (I have had lots of messages saying so) then this one os for you!