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A hot water crust is a completely different kind of crust than we normally think of for a pie. It’s generally used for savory hand-raised pies, pies made without a tin mold. These hot water crust pork pies are made in a muffin tin so shaping is easier than you think!
Often when people hear Hot Water Crust they often think WHAT? HOW? Isn’t THE BIG TRICK with pie dough/pastry dough supposed to be “keep it ICE COLD?” Isn’t that the point? Keep it cold and you’ll have a thin tender crust?
For Danish Pastry the dough is kept as cold as possible, and it’s the same with Shortcrust Pastry and Easy Pie Crust as well. Even the good old sturdy Pasty Dough is chilled. And pretty much every other pastry dough or pie dough I’ve made.
But this recipe breaks the mold! The water and part of the fats are boiled while the remaining fats are worked into the flour. Then the boiling water is poured over the flour mix and stirred. Once it’s cooled to the touch you knead the dough.
The resulting hot water crust dough can be hand-raised or formed in a tin. And the baked pies will have a crispy yet sturdy shell to hold ALL kinds of fillings. They’re tough enough to have fillings that would generally ruin any other pastry. And NO SOGGY BOTTOMS!
What if I don’t Want to Make a Pork Pie?
You can do a lot with this versatile sturdy pie dough. You can fill with just about ANYTHING. When thinking of fillings you want to think about 2-3 Tablespoons or so of filling PER pie in a regular muffin tin.
If you’re using the recipe to make one big pie you would need more filling to fill it up because you’re making one instead of many. I would suggest 2-3 cups of filling but then again it may take more than that. And for a large hand-raised pie you’re going to have to cook it longer, more like 90 minutes.
No Lard Hot Water Crust
I do not normally keep lard in the pantry. So when a recipe comes along that calls for lard I ALWAYS try to work it without lard. I usually substitute butter because I’ve had good luck with it. This recipe from Paul Hollywood and the GBBO is no different!
I’ve found that substituting butter 1:1 with lard works 9/10. So if you’re looking for a lard-free hot water crust, this one is for you. If you HAVE lard and you want to use it, just sub the same amount of lard for the butter.
It’s Tudor Week on the GBBO
For our GBBO Bake-Along we’re following “Collection 4” on Netlfix. This week is Tudor Week and the bakes were:
Signature Bake: Hot Water Crust Pies
Technical Bake: Jumbles
Showstopper: Marzipan Cake
What Do I Need to Make Hot Water Crust Pastry?
For THIS project in particular you will need:
- A Muffin Tin
- Parchment Paper
- 14 Ounces ground pork OR good pork sausage, OR you can try ground beef or lamb as well
- Round Cookie Cutters, large enough to create a bottom crust in your muffin tins and then a second small crust for the top-HINT use a bowl or jar or something you already have!
- Bread Flour (you CAN use all regular all-purpose flour if you need to)
- All-Purpose Flour
Pork Pie Filling
- 14 ounces ground pork OR pork sausage
- 2 teaspoons dried sage
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- pinch of red pepper flakes
Hot Water Crust
- 2 1/8 cups (255 grams) all-purpose flour
- 3/8 cup (75 grams) bread flour
- 8 1/2 TBSP (120 grams) cold butter, divided
- 135 ml water
- 1 teaspoon salt
- mix the pork filling ingredients together and set it aside, if you have a good pork sausage you probably don't have to add anything to it just have it ready to stuff pies
- preheat the oven to 375˚
- cut strips of parchment to help lift the pies out of the muffin tin if desired
- put the flour and about 4 TBSP of the butter in a bowl and work the butter into the flour until it resembles coarse crumbs
- then bring the water, remaining butter, and salt to a quick boil
- when the butter has melted remove it from the heat and pour over the flour mixture
- stir until combined
- let it cool for a minute or two until you can knead it comfortably with your hands
- knead it for 3-4 minutes, it's done when it's smooth and lump-free
- divide it into 2/3s and 1/3
- roll out the bigger piece of dough to about 1/10 of an inch
- use a 4 1/2 inch cookie cutter to cut 8 circles
- put a parchment strip in the bottom of one well of a muffin tin
- lay a dough circle over it and gently ease it into the muffin tin
- repeat with remaining dough
- divide the filling into 8 equal pieces and place in the bottom crusts
- roll the remaining dough out and cut smaller circles for the top
- you can cut steam holes in them if you like OR you can leave them plain (I did plain)
- brush the top rim of the pastry with beaten egg and lay one top crust on it, pinch together to seal it
- repeat with remaining top crusts
- brush the top with the beaten egg
- bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes
- gently remove the pies from the muffin tin
- brush the sides with the beaten egg and the top one more time as well
- place pies on a baking sheet
- bake for another 10 minutes
- serve hot
*Measure your muffin tin to get the best size of cookie cutters for the top and bottom crusts
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