To help caterers maximise takings during the week, organisers Jus-Rol Professional and gravy experts Maggi have put together their top tips for making the most out of both sweet and savoury pies.
Martin Lines, marketing director at Nestlé Professional, which owns Maggi, said the popularity of the ‘great British favourite’ proved a good opportunity for caterers to maximize their profit potential.
“The key is to think about the customer and what they want,” he said. “A simple chicken or steak pie with a rich and flavoursome gravy might be just the ticket; however for those more adventurous customers why not embrace the trend and try something a little different such as a Balti flavoured pie or another more quirky option.”
The 2010 event launches this week with the announcement of Adam Pavey from The Goat Major in Cardiff as its official ambassador. The head chef was chosen to be the Face of British Pie Week after submitting a recipe for Wye Valley Pie (chicken, asparagus and potato topped with Tintern Abbey cheese and puff pastry), to a nationwide competition.
Pavey, said: “I’m delighted the Wye Valley Pie won, it means so much to me that it’s been recognised and I’m looking forward to showcasing it during British Pie Week.”
Both Renaissance Pubs and ETM Group will also be promoting their pie menus during the week with a ‘pie and pint for £10’ offer.
Maggi’s top tips for British Pie Week:
Choose the right pie
Consider what your customers will want to see and look at all your options, from the classic Chicken and Ham to the more exotic Thai Chicken, the varieties are limitless.
Make sure it takes pride of place on your menu during British Pie Week and consider promotions i.e. a pie and a pint for £10. Ensure you provide a delicious description of the pie and all its trimmings.
Perfecting the gravy
Don’t assume that ‘one size fits all’. Meat must be matched to the right sauce, a generic vegetable gravy will not necessary match a chicken pie. Choose a gravy that truly compliments your pie, one that can transform the overall flavour and ensure all the elements marry together in harmony. Don’t forget to check the consistency, colour and taste.
Different flavours for different pies
Research which veggies go best with each pie, mashed potato is always a winner, but chips work well too. If you have a very meaty pie some crisp carrots and green beans will lift the dish and provide balance.
Don’t go over the top
It can be tempting to pile the plate high when serving a wholesome dish, but resist. Pies can be very filling so think about what is a realistic amount for one person to eat. This will also keep the profit potential high and reduce the amount of wasted food.