Flemish Lamb and Oyster Pie

This Flemish variation on the traditional English beef and kidney pie is well worth the little extra trouble which isn't nearly as much as it seems.

Ingredients

Flour Mixture

  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Pinch of freshly ground pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon dried thyme
  • ⅛ teaspoon dried sage
  • ⅛ teaspoon marjoram
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground mace
  • 2 pounds boneless lamb stew meat, cut into small cubes
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 2 tablespoons lard or chicken fat
  • 6 leeks, cleaned and cut into 2-inch lengths
  • 6 carrots, peeled and sliced into very thin rounds
  • 6 large mushrooms, sliced thin
  • 1 ten-and-one-half-ounce can beef bouillon
  • 1 onion, chopped fine
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 12 oysters, shucked
  • 1 cup freshly shelled peas or 1 ten-ounce package frozen peas
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley or 1 tablespoon dried parsley
  • Pastry crust for a one-crust pie

Method

Presoak a clay pot, top and bottom, in water for 15 minutes.

Combine the flour, salt, pepper, and herbs in a paper bag and mix thoroughly. Add the cubed lamb and shake. Set aside any remaining flour mixture.

In a frying pan, brown the lamb well on all sides in the butter and lard, then put in the presoaked pot. Put the leeks, carrots, and mushrooms in the frying pan along with the bouillon, and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove the vegetables with a slotted spoon and add to the pot, leaving the bouillon in the pan. Flour the chopped onion and garlic in the remaining flour mixture, add to the bouillon, and simmer until thickened.

Meanwhile, add the oysters and peas to the pot and mix the contents gently. Pour the bouillon mixture into the pot, add the chopped parsley, then cover the contents of the pot with the pastry crust (your own favorite recipe); slash the crust in several places to allow steam to escape.

Cover the pot and place it in a cold oven.

Set the oven temperature at 480 degrees.

Cook for 50 minutes.

Remove the lid for the last 5 minutes to brown the crust.

Serve right from the pot.

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