Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe

Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe
Yields: 1 Serving Difficulty: Easy Prep Time: 1 Hr 30 Mins Cook Time: 45 Mins Total Time: 2 Hr 15 Mins

The Hairy Bikers cheese and onion pie is a classic savory pie featuring a delicious mix of cheese and onions encased in a pastry crust. Originating from the British TV show “The Hairy Bikers,” this recipe has gained popularity for its rich flavors and straightforward preparation. Dave Myers and Si King, the chefs behind this creation, are renowned for their passion for pies and their entertaining cooking style.

In this article, I’ll show you how to make this cheese and onion pie from scratch, with step-by-step instructions and tips. You’ll also learn some interesting facts about the origin and history of this dish, and how to customize it to your liking. Let’s get started!

What is Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie Recipe?

Hairy Bikers cheese and onion pie is a savory pie that consists of a pastry crust filled with cheese and onion mixture. The name comes from the popular British TV show “The Hairy Bikers”, where two motorcycle enthusiasts and chefs, Dave Myers and Si King, travel around the world and cook various dishes. They are known for their love of pies and their humorous style.

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Why You Love this Recipe

  • Nutrient-Rich: This pie is a great source of protein, calcium, and phosphorus, vital for healthy bones, muscles, and teeth.
  • Filling and Balanced: It’s satisfying and helps in appetite control, reducing the chances of overeating.
  • Easy and Economical: The recipe is straightforward and cost-effective, saving both time and money.
  • Customizable: You can easily adapt it using different types of cheese, pastry, and other fillings based on your taste and ingredient availability.
  • Delightfully Tasty: The combination of sharp cheddar cheese, caramelized onions, and flaky pastry creates a mouth-watering flavor.

Ingredients Needed to Make Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie – Step-by-Step Guide

To make this cheese and onion pie, you’ll need the following ingredients:

  • 500 g (1 lb) of shortcrust pastry
  • 50 g (2 oz) of butter
  • 3 large onions, peeled and sliced
  • 2 teaspoons of sugar
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 300 g (10 oz) of mature cheddar cheese, grated
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 150 ml (5 fl oz) of double cream
  • A pinch of nutmeg
  • A beaten egg, for glazing

Instructions to Make Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie

Follow these simple steps to make this recipe:

Step 1: Prepare the Oven and the Pie Dish

  • Preheat your oven to 200°C (180°C fan, gas mark 6) and lightly grease a 23 cm (9 inch) pie dish with some butter or cooking spray.
  • This will ensure that your pie crust will not stick to the dish and will bake evenly.

Step 2: Make the Pastry Base

  • Roll out two-thirds of the pastry on a floured surface with a rolling pin, until it is about 3 mm (1/8 inch) thick and large enough to cover the pie dish and the sides.
  • Carefully lift the pastry and place it over the pie dish, pressing it gently into the corners and edges. Leave some overhang around the rim, as you will need it to seal the pie later.
  • Prick the base of the pastry with a fork, to prevent it from puffing up during baking.
  • Chill the pastry base in the fridge for 15 minutes, to relax the gluten and prevent it from shrinking.

Step 3: Cook the Onions

  • In a large frying pan, melt the butter over medium-low heat and add the onions, sugar, salt, and pepper. The sugar will help the onions caramelize and bring out their sweetness.
  • Cook, stirring occasionally, for about 25 minutes, or until the onions are soft and golden. If the pan gets too dry, you can add a splash of water to prevent the onions from burning.
  • Set aside the onion mixture to cool slightly, before adding it to the pie.

Step 4: Make the Cheese Mixture

  • In a small bowl, whisk together the cheese, eggs, cream, and nutmeg until well combined. The nutmeg will add a hint of spice and complement the cheese flavor.
  • The cheese mixture will act as a binder and a sauce for the pie filling.

Step 5: Assemble the Pie

  • Spoon the onion mixture over the pastry base and spread it evenly, leaving a small border around the edge.
  • Pour the cheese mixture over the onions and level the surface with a spatula or a spoon.
  • Roll out the remaining pastry on a floured surface, until it is about 3 mm (1/8 inch) thick and large enough to cover the pie filling.
  • Cover the filling with the pastry, sealing the edges with a fork. Trim off any excess pastry with a knife and make a small hole in the center of the pie, to allow steam to escape.
  • Brush the top of the pie with the beaten egg, to give it a golden and glossy finish.

Step 6: Bake the Pie

  • Bake the pie in the preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden and crisp.
  • You can check if the pie is done by inserting a skewer or a knife into the center. If it comes out clean, the pie is ready.
  • If the pie is browning too quickly, you can cover it with some foil to prevent it from burning.

Step 7: Serve the Pie

  • Let the pie rest for 10 minutes before serving, to allow the filling to set and the flavors to mingle.
  • You can serve the pie hot, warm, or cold, depending on your preference and the occasion.
  • Enjoy your delicious cheese and onion pie with your favorite sides and sauces.
hairy bikers cheese and onion pie
Hairy Bikers cheese and onion pie

What Do I Serve With Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie?

Complementing the Hairy Bikers cheese and onion pie with the right sides can elevate your meal experience. Here are some refined serving ideas:

  • Classic British Comfort: Pair with golden, crispy chips, rich gravy, and mushy peas for an authentic British pub feel.
  • Wholesome and Nourishing: Serve alongside roasted vegetables like carrots, parsnips, and potatoes, seasoned with herbs for a hearty yet healthy touch.
  • Fresh and Zesty: Accompany with a tomato and basil salad, drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, offering a refreshing contrast.
  • Sweet Harmony: Try apple sauce for a unique sweet and tangy balance that complements the savory pie.
  • Simple Classics: Opt for traditional condiments like mustard, ketchup, or brown sauce to add a familiar and satisfying taste.

cheese and onion pie recipe hairy bikers

Pro Tips to Make Perfect Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie

To ensure your cheese and onion pie stands out, consider these expert tips:

  • Pastry Perfection: For homemade shortcrust pastry, blend 300 g of plain flour with 150 g of cold, cubed butter and a pinch of salt until breadcrumb-like. Gradually add cold water to form a dough. Chill wrapped in cling film for 30 minutes for easier handling.
  • Cheese Choices: Select cheeses that melt well and offer robust flavors. Cheddar, Gruyere, Emmental, Parmesan, or Blue Cheese are excellent choices. Mix different varieties for a more complex taste profile.
  • Filling Enhancements: Incorporate cooked bacon, ham, mushrooms, spinach, or herbs into the filling for added texture and depth of flavor. Remember to remove excess moisture to prevent a soggy crust.
  • Golden Glaze: Brush the pie top with milk, cream, or an egg wash to achieve a beautiful golden sheen.
  • Texture Topping: Sprinkle sesame seeds, poppy seeds, or a little extra cheese on top before baking for added crunch and an extra burst of flavor.

Variations of Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie

Experimenting with different variations can add an exciting twist to the classic Hairy Bikers cheese and onion pie. Here are some innovative ideas:

Pastry Variations:

  • Puff Pastry: Swap shortcrust for puff pastry for a lighter, airier crust that adds a delightful textural contrast.
  • Hot Water Crust: For a more traditional, robust pie, opt for a hot water crust pastry. This option is ideal for pies that hold their shape well, perfect for picnics or buffets.

Filling Innovations:

  • Plant-Based Options: Use vegan cheese and dairy-free cream to cater to a vegan diet without compromising on taste.
  • Vibrant Vegetables: Incorporate sweet potatoes, butternut squash, or pumpkin as a filling. These not only add vibrant colors but also enhance the nutritional value.
  • Aromatic Alternatives: Replace onions with leeks, garlic, or shallots for a subtler, more aromatic flavor profile.
  • Mediterranean Flair: Introduce a Mediterranean twist with feta cheese, olives, and oregano, replacing the traditional cheddar, nutmeg, and sugar.

How do I store Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie Leftovers?

  1. Refrigerator Storage:
    • After cooling completely, wrap the pie tightly in foil or plastic wrap, or place it in an airtight container. This will preserve its freshness for up to 3 days in the fridge.
  2. Freezer Storage:
    • For longer storage, cool the pie, then slice it into portions. Wrap each portion tightly in foil or plastic wrap, or use freezer-safe bags. Label with the date and contents for organization, and freeze for up to 3 months.

How do I reheat Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie Leftovers?

  1. Oven Reheating:
    • For refrigerated leftovers, preheat your oven to 180°C (160°C fan, gas mark 4). Place the pie on a baking sheet and reheat for 15 to 20 minutes until it’s hot and the crust regains its crispiness.
  2. Microwave Option:
    • For a quick reheat, microwave individual slices for a few minutes. Keep in mind that this method might soften the pastry’s texture.
  3. From the Freezer:
    • Thaw frozen leftovers in the fridge overnight. Once thawed, reheat them in the oven following the above steps to restore the pie’s freshly-baked quality.

Nutrition Value

The nutrition value per serving (8 servings) is as follows:

  • Calories: 682 kcal
  • Fat: 46 g
  • Saturated fat: 26 g
  • Carbohydrates: 48 g
  • Sugar: 7 g
  • Fiber: 3 g
  • Protein: 21 g
  • Salt: 1.3 g

FAQs

Can I Make Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie Ahead of Time?

Yes, you can prepare this pie in advance. You can make the pastry and filling a day before and refrigerate them separately. If you choose to assemble the pie beforehand, keep it refrigerated and bake it the next day. Remember that the pastry may lose some of its crispness if refrigerated after assembly, so baking it fresh is recommended for the best texture.

What sauce goes with cheese and onion pie?

Many sauces go well with a cheese and onion pie, depending on your preference and taste. Some of the best sauces are coronation chicken sauce, tzatziki sauce, mint sauce, romesco sauce, and pizza sauce.

What Types of Cheese Work Best in This Recipe?

The original recipe recommends using mature cheddar cheese for its strong flavor and good melting properties. However, you can experiment with other varieties like Gruyere, Emmental, or a mix of different cheeses for more complexity. Avoid using overly soft or fresh cheeses, as they might make the filling too runny.

Is There a Way to Make the Hairy Bikers Cheese and Onion Pie Vegetarian or Vegan?

The original recipe is already vegetarian-friendly. To make it vegan, you can use plant-based cheese and a vegan pastry. There are many dairy-free cheese options available that melt well and can be used as substitutes. For the pastry, either find a vegan pre-made option or make your own using plant-based butter.

Conclusion

Hairy Bikers cheese and onion pie is a delicious and easy dish that you can make at home with simple ingredients. It’s a great way to use up leftover cheese and onions and to enjoy a comforting and filling meal. It’s also a versatile and adaptable dish that you can customize to your liking, and serve with various sides and sauces. It’s a perfect dish for any occasion, whether you want to impress your guests, treat your family, or indulge yourself.

I hope you enjoyed this article and learned how to make this cheese and onion pie from scratch. If you have any questions, comments, or feedback, please let me know in the comments section below. I’d love to hear from you and help you with your food blog. Thank you for reading and happy cooking!

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