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Frugal Pie

Frugal Pie
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Yield: Serves 4

This pie, adapted from an old cookbook, makes a thrifty yet nutritious meal.

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  • 1 pound left-over meat, cut in small pieces (or ground chuck)
  • 1 pound cold potatoes, peeled
  • 2 small onions
  • 1 sprig flavoring herb (thyme or a bay leaf)
  • 1 teaspoon flour
  • 2 tablespoons drippings
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • 1 cup left-over gravy
  • salt and pepper


Skin, scald, and slice the onions, then brown them slightly with half of the drippings in a pan. Pour off the drippings. Break the flour with a little cold water (make a paste), and add it to the onions, along with the rest of the gravy, the herb sprig, salt, and pepper. Simmer for about 15 minutes, until the onion is tender, stirring to prevent the flour from sticking to the pan. Remove the sprig and let the sauce cool. Four it into a pie dish, and put the meat into it. Mash the potatoes, and add to them the milk and the other half of the drippings. Lay the potatoes smoothly on top of the meat; score them across with a knife. Put the pie into the oven to brown (425 degrees F). When browned, it is ready. Lacking an oven, place the pie on the hob or hot plate for a few minutes to warm it through (do not allow it to boil), then brown it in front of the fire. The top of the pie may be glazed by brushing it over with a little milk.
Updated Thursday, August 16th, 2007

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