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Top five tips on how to polish off the perfect pie

Brits spend more than £1billion on pies every year. They’re a British dinnertime staple, enjoyed across the nation at homes, pubs and football stadiums.

But it seems no one can agree on how the pie should be presented.

Full cases or tops? Gravy or red sauce? Mash, chips, or simply solo?

Pie master and owner of the landmark Mad O’Rourke’s Pie Factory is here to clear up the debate – and set pie-eaters straight on the proper way to enjoy one of his handmade pastry delicacies.

Peter recently launched a Pies by Post service to enable pie-lovers all over the UK to enjoy his famous pies from the comfort of their own home.

Here are his top five tips on how to polish off the perfect pie:

Dip those chips!
Peter says the best way to avoid a burned mouth is to take the top off the pie first and while waiting for the dish to cool, to dip chips in the gravy filling.
“Allow that wonderful filling to cool – and while you wait, dunk those chips in and enjoy the sauce before tucking into the main event,” says Peter.

To sauce or not to sauce?
“Your pie absolutely doesn’t need tomato or brown sauce – that’s disgraceful!” laughs Peter.
“There’s plenty of flavour in our pies as they are; you’re eating the wrong kind of pie if you need it with a sauce!
“If you absolutely have to, the only acceptable form of sauce with a pie is gravy.”

Pastry preferences
When it comes to pastry, Peter says his personal preference is to have his soft – though he’s offered tips for those who like theirs crispy too.
“If you want your pastry crispy, pop it in a nice hot oven – but our Pies by Post don’t take long to heat up, so take care not to overdo them,” said Peter.
“If you want the pastry soft like I do, pop them in the microwave – you don’t need an oven for these.”

Appropriate accompaniments
Does salad ever belong on a plate alongside a pie? Does a jacket potato have its place? Not according to Peter.
“You’re going to want to serve that delicious pie either with chips or mash, nothing fancy is needed,” he said.

Pair with the perfect pint
Peter has shed a light on the best tipple to enjoy with a piping hot pie – and insists that the Tipton venue’s gravy-filled delicacies are best paired with a pint.
Peter says if you can’t get your hands on one of the pub’s delicious Lump Hammer bitter or gold or Sledge Hammer IPA, you’re best to go for a top beer.
“Don’t risk taking the shine off your pie dinner with a cheap lager,” added Peter. “You’re absolutely best to go for a good quality beer, such as a nice bitter or IPA.”

Celebrate British Food Fortnight with a pack of iconic Mad O’Rourke’s pies via the venue’s Pies By Post scheme; a new venture started up by the firm during lockdown which sees the restaurant send its array of famous, cheekily-named pies to addresses across the country.

Handmade pies on offer to buy through Pies By Post include: the Posh ‘n’ Becks (steak and stilton), the Sticky Rib, the Hen Pecked (chicken and mushroom), the Eeny Meeny Beeny (vegan chilli veg), Wham Bam Thank You Lamb (minted lamb), 100% Bullocks (steak) and more.

British Food Fortnight runs until October 3.