Starting with the pastry, tip the flour into a large bowl and add the diced butter and salt. Using your finger tips ‘rub’ the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs and you no longer have any large lumps of unmixed butter.
Add 4 tblsp of cold water and work gently to bring the mixture together to form a dough, adding more water if needed. Try not to knead the dough too much as this is what makes it tough once cooked
Once you have the dough formed, flatten it into an oval disc, wrap in cling-film and put in the fridge for at least 30 minutes or overnight (or freeze!)
Preheat the oven to 160 Fan / 180 C / 350 F / Gas 4 and brush the insides of 12 hole muffin tray with butter, oil or spray oil. Dust each muffin hole with a little flour and shake out the excess. This just helps the little pies release easily from the tin
For the filling, bring a medium pan of salted water to the boil then add the diced sweet potato. Boil for 5 minutes, add the broccoli florets and boil for another 5 minutes. Drain off all the water
Saute the diced onion and crushed garlic in a small frying pan with a drizzle of olive oil and the thyme leaves until the onion becomes soft and translucent. Add to the broccoli and stir together with the pesto and roughly chopped parsley, a few good grinds of pepper and a large pinch of salt
Remove the pastry from the fridge and on a floured work surface, roll out the pastry till it’s about the thickness of a £1 coin. Remember to turn the dough frequently as you roll to help prevent the pastry sticking to the table.
Using a 3 1/4 inch (8 1/2 cm) round cutter, cut 12 circles and gently ease each one into your muffin tin, pushing the pastry down into the corners – you can use a little nub of excess pastry to push the pastry into the holes
Then using a 2 3/4 inch (7 cm) round cutter, cut another 12 circles (re-rolling the extra pastry as necessary) Set aside while you fill!
Pack the filling into your little pies as tight as you can, gently pushing down so you can get as much filling in as possible. Once you’ve filled them all brush the edges of the pastry with some beaten egg then place on the lids pushing down gently
Brush the tops with some more egg then using a pointed knife poke a couple of holes in the top of each pie
Bake for 45-50 minutes until golden brown. Leave to cool for a few minutes in the tin to firm up then gently remove
These little pies are just as tasty hot or cold and are great in lunchboxes or very handy for picnics! They also freeze really well!
Recipe by The Cook & Him at https://www.thecookandhim.com/recipes/broccoli-and-sweet-potato-pies/