October 22 is International Wombat Day, probably a bigger holiday in other hemispheres, but worthy of a celebration nonetheless.
We love wombats at our house, and when we discovered this holiday a year or so ago, we realized we had to observe it. With, of course, the proper dinner.
I discovered it under a false name at allrecipes.com. There they called it Australian Meat Pie. I immediately liked the sound of it because it used puff pastry for its crust--so quick! so easy! so processed! so--just don't tell anyone! Actually, I have learned in my years of association with Greeks that there are those Greek ladies who use puff pastry for their pittas instead of filo dough. So I figure if upstanding Greek ladies can use puff pastry for filo, I can use it for a pie.
We had to switch out the beef for ground turkey at our house, and I prefer a little more Worcestershire sauce than the recipe calls for. And there are those times when I just can't be bothered to dice an onion and dried onion will have to do.
For awhile, in a warmly backlit, soft-edged period of a few happy weeks at our house, my children were cooking dinner once a week. (That's right. It didn't last long.) This dish, my son's favorite, was also the first thing he learned to cook. He made it once with my help, and then a second time alone. Now I feel he can survive on his own. He knows how to cook one serviceable dinner. My job here is done.
With wombat pie, you hardly need to add anything else to your Wombat Day celebration. Australians bake a cake the shape of a wombat, and chocolate seems to figure in this event as well. Here is a chocolate wombat cake baked by New Zealand schoolboys.
Time for a little chocolate to finish out our celebration....in time for the debate. Happy Wombat Day.
This is sort of like sloppy joe meat in a pie shell. Why haven't I thought of this before?
1 1/2 lb. ground turkey
1 onion, chopped
1 cup water, divided
2 beef bouillon cubes
1/4 cup ketchup
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon oregano
1 pinch nutmeg
3 tablespoons plain flour
2 puff pastry sheets
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Brown meat and onion. Add 3/4 cup of the water, bouillon cubes, ketchup and Worcestershire sauce, pepper, oregano, and nutmeg.
Boil and cover for 15 minutes. (Well, you don't have to do this 15 minutes thing. It makes it better but sometimes you just don't have 15 minutes.)
Blend flour with the remaining 1/4 cup water until it becomes a smooth paste; add to the meat mix.
Grease a pie dish and line with puff pastry.
Add the cooled filling mixture, put the pastry top on and squish the edges together in an artsy way. Cut slits in the top, or a cute smiley face.
Bake at 400 for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 and bake for 25 minutes more.
recipe credit: australian.food.com/recipe/australian-meat-pie
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