bj inspired bacon & egg pie

Say goodbye to boiled, fried, scrambled and poached eggs this weekend. Spoil yourself with this scrumptious breakfast pie.

All credit goes to the amazing BJ (aka Belinda Jeffery) Have you seen her website?  OMG! Just like her books, recipe collection and amazing photograper Rodney Weidland. Gorgeous.

"Mix & Bake" is still my absolute BJ fav. I started baking this pie in 2007 when the book was first released and I haven’t stopped baking it since. Our cafe customers used to tell me ‘how a little bit spoilt’ they felt when presented with a steamy slice on a Sunday morning. There’s no reason why you can’t whip it up and feel a little bit spoilt too, this weekend or sometime soon.

Ingredients - Adapted just a smidge from Belinda’s Mix & Bake and using my own method 

600 grams of store bought quality puff or shortcrust pastry (I always use Careme brand puff but Belinda uses shortcrust)  both work equally as yum ❤ 2 large leeks, white part only, washed and sliced finely (you can use onions if you don’t have leeks) ❤ 8 large rashers of butchers Bacon, rind removed ❤ bunch of freshly picked Italian parsley ❤ 1 tablespoon chopped chives ❤ 11 free range eggs ❤ ½ cup (125 ml) full cream milk or cream (I use cream, surprise surprise!) ❤ a little ground nutmeg & freshly cracked pepper ❤ egg wash ie. 1 egg yolk mixed with 1 teaspoon of water to glaze pie top

Method + Tips - Grease and line the bottom of a 24 or 26cm loose bottom tart tin with baking paper. Ensure it’s a good quality tin that won’t leak or use an extra layer of baking paper and a sheet of tin foil if necessary to line tin bottom. Place the tin on a flat baking tray.

Prepare the leeks by chopping the whites finely. Place in a microwave proof bowl with a knob of butter and cover with cling wrap.  Cook on high heat in the microwave for 3 minutes. If you don’t use a microwave, just sweat and fry the leeks off in a frying pan for a few minutes. Put aside to cool.

Remove rind from the bacon and put into the frying pan.  Fry off the rind for a minute or two to coat the bottom of your pan. Remove and discard. Add the whole bacon strips and fry until browned but not crisp. Put aside to cool and chop roughly.

Preheat oven to moderately hot 190°C (370°F). Line base and sides of pie tin with pastry. Reserve ⅓ of the pastry for your pie top.

Scatter leeks and ¾ of the chopped bacon inside pastry shell. Crack each egg into a cup and add gently to the top of the pie filling.  Use all ten. Try not to break the yolks if you can help it as the whole eggs look so fab in the pie slices. Saying that, if you break a few it really doesn’t matter.  

Whisk the final remaining egg with your milk or cream until combined.  Drizzle this over the pie filling and scatter the remaining bacon and freshly chopped herbs on top.

Cover the pie with its pastry top.  Seal the edges in, squeezing with your finger tips after wetting the edges with a little egg wash. Trim the leftover pastry around the edge with a sharp knife.

Any pastry offcuts can be used to cutout little leaves for decorating the top.  Just mark out the leaf shape and score pastry with a blunt knife down the centre and sides of each leaf to make the leaf veins. Arrange on pie centre. Gently prick pie centre and sides with a fork to allow the steam to escape while cooking. Brush all over with egg wash glaze.

Bake for 50-55 minutes until golden brown and the smell is driving you crazy. Leave pie to cool on a wire rack in the tin. It’s just as lovely served as leftovers for a few days after. Keep it in the fridge.  

If desired, experiment with your breakfast fillings. BJ recommends scattering chopped smoked salmon instead of cooked bacon and using dill instead of chives.  You won’t ever step a foot wrong with that terrific variation.