In deepest, darkest France there is a village called Pthivier which has given its name to this pie. I admit it is a complicated recipe but make no apology for that. Traditionally it was filled with frangipane but was also made as a savoury. The one shown here comprises three layers inside; a potato cake, a round of salmon pate and a round of goat's cheese.
Makes: 6 pthivier pies
1 stick celery
75ml thinckened cream
50g mascarpone cheese
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 teaspoon horseradish sauce
salt and pepper, to taste
2 potatoes, peeled and diced
1 onion, finely chopped
oil or butter for frying
2 teaspoons coarse grain mustard
100ml thickened cream
salt and pepper, to taste
3 tablespoons plain flour
100g goat's cheese
1 pack puff pastry
1 egg, beaten
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Salmon Pate: Steam the salmon and the celery in a steamer until the salmon is no longer pink in the centre and flakes easily with a fork, and the celery is tender. Remove and flake the salmon being careful to remove any bones. Allow to cool and then finely chop the celery and place both in a liquidiser.
Add the cream, mascarpone, lemon juice and horseradish sauce then blitz thoroughly. Slowly add the milk until a stiff consistency is reached. Add salt and pepper to taste. Place in a bowl and cover and place in the fridge.
Potato Cake: Place the diced potato in boiling, salted water until tender. When ready put through a mincer or potato ricer.
Gently fry the chopped onion in a bit of oil or butter until it is soft and translucent.
Mix the potato and onion together in a bowl then add the mustard and cream. Add salt and pepper to taste. Slowly add the flour until it reaches a dough-like consistency.
Roll out onto a board until 3-4mm thick and cut into 6cm circles. In a shallow pan lightly fry these until just coloured on both sides. Place to one side to cool.
Pie: Roll out the pastry and cut six each of 10cm and 9cm circles. Put the 10cm ones to one side.
Pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees C. Prick the 9cm circles all over and bake for about 5 to 6 minutes. Allow to cool.
Place a layer of plastic wrap on a board and spoon the pate on top. Cover with another layer of plastic wrap then roll out to about 5mm thick.
Hopefully the cheese has come as a round in which case cut thin slices and trim with the 6cm cutter. Do the same with the potato cakes. Cut circles of the salmon as well.
Take one of the pre-baked circle of pastry and layer up with a round each of potato, salmon and finally goat's cheese.
Brush with egg wash around the edge of the pastry. Carefully place one of the larger circles of pastry over the top and allow to cover the pie. Crimp with a fork all round.
Use a cutter and trim the base of the pie. Make a hole in the centre of the top and then incise the traditional spiral cuts all the way round being careful not to go all the way through.
Egg wash all over and then bake for about 15 to 20 minutes.