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Dingle Pies


Dingle is mountainous sheep country in the west of Ireland where that long wild peninsula plunges into the Atlantic Ocean. Traditionally these pies were made from scraps of mutton. Fisherman cooked them in a can at sea. Farmers slipped the cooled pies in a pocket for a tasty meal. Our version is made with ground lamb and flavored with cumin seed. They make an excellent lunch on a hike or picnic. (Pies may be frozen for up to several months).

Makes about 2 dozen pies


Flaky Cream Cheese Pie Crust

  • 10 ounces unbleached all-purpose flour
  • 1⁄4 teaspoon salt
  • 1⁄4 teaspoons non-alum baking powder
  • 4 1⁄2 ounces cold cream cheese
  • 6 ounces cold unsalted butter
  • 2 tablespoons ice water
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar

Makes 2 9-inch crusts (double recipe for 24 pies)

Dingle Pie Filling

  • 2 large onions, minced
  • 5 carrots, minced
  • 5 stalks celery, minced
  • 3 teaspoons cumin seed
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon salt
  • 1⁄2 teaspoon pepper
  • 2 pound organic lamb, ground
  • 1 pint chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoon butter
  • 2 eggs (for egg wash) 


Flaky Cream Cheese Pie Crust

  1. Place flour, salt and baking powder in the bowl of a mixer. Add well-chilled cream cheese cut into 1-inch pieces, then mix until mixture resembles coarse meal.
  2. Add butter and mix until butter is no larger than pea sized. Add water and vinegar and mix briefly. Mixture should be in particles.
  3. Empty bowl on to countertop and work mixture together with your hands. Divide into two discs; wrap in plastic and refrigerate at least one hour before rolling out.

Dingle Pies

Preheat oven to 250°F

  1. In a heavy skillet, melt butter and sautée the onions, carrots and celery until soft.
  2. Add the ground lamb, cumin seed, salt and pepper. Brown the lamb well.
  3. Stir in stock, then place pan in a 250° F oven and cook for 30 minutes.
  4. Roll out cream cheese pastry and cut into 6-inch circles.
  5. Place a scoop of lamb mixture in the center of each circle.
  6. Make an egg wash (beat eggs with a pinch of salt) and brush edges with egg wash.
  7. Fold the dough over to form a semi circle, crimping to seal the edges. Make two slits to vent steam and place pies on rack in freezer until completely frozen.
  • To cook: Preheat oven to 350°F. Place frozen pie on cookie sheet. Bake at 350° for 25 minutes, or until tops are golden.

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