Unsmoked Gammon & Pancetta Pie

A recipe hailing from Shropshire, this hearty pie is a wonderful hot dinner accompanied with winter vegetables but equally delicious served cold as part of a picnic lunch.

Serves 6-8 people   Prep 45 minutes   Cook 60–120 minutes


For the pastry

250g plain flour, plus a little extra for dusting

125g unsalted butter, chopped

1 free range egg yolk

2-3 tbsp cold water

1 small free range egg, beaten with a little milk

For the filling

3 Maris Piper potatoes, peeled and cut to 1cm slices

1 onion, finely sliced

150g pancetta

2 Denhay unsmoked gammon steaks

4 sage leaves finely sliced

Oil (to taste)

2 Bramley apples, cored, peeled and cut into 1cm slices

Freshly ground black pepper

1 tbsp Muscovado sugar

150ml / ¼ pint cider

1 tbsp cornflour

150ml / ¼ pint double cream


Preheat the oven to 180°C Gas Mk 4.

For the pastry, place all ingredients – except the water – into a food processor. Pulse until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the water and pulse to combine. Wrap the dough in clingfilm and place in the fridge to chill until required.

For the filling, blanch the potato slices in boiling salted water for a few minutes. Gently fry the onion until soft and translucent. Add the pancetta and fry until crisp.

In a clean pan, fry the Denhay gammon steaks and sage for 1-2 minutes. Remove from the pan and leave to cool until the gammon can be handled with ease. Then chop or tear it into small pieces.

In a shallow ovenproof dish, drizzle a little oil, add a layer of potatoes and top with some gammon. Next add a layer of the onion and pancetta mix and a layer of apples to the dish. Now add a layer of fried onion and another layer of gammon. Finally add another layer of the onion and pancetta mix. Season well and add a sprinkle of sugar.

Mix the cider, cornflour and double cream together. Season to taste and pour over the layers of filling. Remove the pastry from the fridge and roll out to the thickness of a pound coin on a lightly floured work surface. Place the pastry on top of the filling in the ovenproof dish. Crimp the edges and make a hole in the centre so that moisture can escape. Brush the pastry with the beaten egg and bake for 1-2 hours until the pastry is crisp and a rich golden brown colour.



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