Rustic Root Vegetable Pie with Blue Cheese & Herbs

January 2015

Every other Saturday, the Urban Farmer bursts through the kitchen door in his decades-old Woolrich coat and snowy boots, and he raises a green bag into the air triumphantly. This prized green bag contains his CSA allotment (Community Supported Agriculture), and aside from supporting our region’s farmers, these bags of veggies have pushed us to cook more and to cook more creatively.

With The Grains Veggie Pie 01

Each CSA share is like a cooking show challenge. Beets, turnips, celeriac…go! For this specific green bag, the Urban Farmer really had pie on his mind. As I began to muse, he interjected my visions of beet slice rosettes atop sweetly spiced squash, “No, I want to make a savory pie.” Before he had finished verbalizing his pie goals, he had already begun peeling and chopping, so we dove into his savory plan in that fluid style of cooking- a sprinkle of this, a dash of that, a slice, a chop and a vague recipe underpinning.

With The Grains Veggie Pie 02

Recipe Notes: This recipe is very loose, and you can adapt it based on your winter vegetable bounty and personal preferences. We began with a large baking stone’s worth of roasted vegetables and had more than we needed for the pie, but that excess makes for easy, healthy dinners later in the week. I’ve been reading about sneaking vodka into pie crusts as way to combat the gluten formation that risks a tough crust. Rather than Vodka, I used a few Tablespoons of Art in the Age’s Sage liquor, hoping to avoid gluten and reap the benefits of the herb flavors. You can also experiment with the cheese, herbs and proteins. This would be delicious with salty shavings of pecorino, and next time, we’ll probably add a spicy sausage to the filling. Be inspired, get creative and go crazy!


Bon Appétit!

p.s: We’re looking forward to this time next year when we’ll be making rustic root veggie pies from the fruits of the Urban Farmer’s labor. He’ll be farming his own land this spring!

Rustic Root Vegetable Pie with Blue Cheese & Herbs

For the Filling

Local & Organic Red Onion
Local & Organic Beet(s)
Local & Organic Parsnip(s)
Local & Organic Turnip(s)
Local & Organic Celery Root(s)
Local & Organic Garlic cloves

2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
Sea salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Herbs de Provence

1/4 cup organic brown sugar
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar

blue cheese crumbles

For the Pastry:

1 1/2 cups whole-wheat pastry flour, plus extra for surface
Pinch of salt

3/4 cup organic, unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small cubes

5 Tablespoons water, chilled
2-3 Tablespoons Art in the Age Sage Liquor

2 teaspoons melted butter or 1 beaten egg


Preheat the oven to 425°F.

Peel and chop the vegetables into thick chunks, and spread on a stone baking sheet. Drizzle with 1 Tablespoon olive oil, and sprinkle with salt, pepper and herbs. Toss to coat. Roast for 40 minutes to 1 hour, until tender.

While the vegetables are roasting, make the pastry.

In a large mixing bowl, briefly whisk the flour and salt.

Using a pastry blender or your fingers, cut the butter into the dry ingredients, until it’s in pea-size pieces that are slightly yellow in color, about 4 to 5 minutes.

Combine the chilled water and Sage liquor. Drizzle the ice water mixture over the flour, a Tablespoon at a time, and mix just until the dough comes together. Do not overwork the dough or it will become tough.

Form the pastry into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and store in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes, or until ready to use.

On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough into a round shape (rough edges are fine), about ⅛ inch thick. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.

Put the brown sugar and balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan on the stove over medium heat. Allow this to bubble for about 5 minutes, until it achieves a thick, syrupy consistency. Swirl the pot occasionally.

Place the roasted vegetables in the middle of the pastry round, allowing 1½ to 2 inches around the edges (you may have extra vegetables). Drizzle the balsamic syrup over the vegetables and season with additional salt, pepper and herbs.

Fold the pastry in toward the center, pleating the dough as necessary. Brush the dough with either melted butter or, if you prefer a more golden look, a beaten egg.

Reduce oven heat to 350°F, and bake for 30 minutes, or until the pastry turns golden brown.

Sprinkle with blue cheese crumbles, and serve warm or cold.


This Post Has 12 Comments

  1. eclecticoddsnsods

    Hah i just wrote my comment on the reblog to my scrapbook. This is very tempting x

  2. Louise

    pie would be tastier if there were no blue cheese in it. hello to the sexy Urban farmer…..

    1. withthegrains

      Shaved parmesan would work wonders in this pie as well, so you can forego the stinky blue if you’re not into stinky blues. 😉 I shall give the Urban Farmer an extra squeeze.

      1. Louise

        thanks for that. :). we have a terrific cheesemaker in australia that makes a really delish’ parmesan. so i will give it a go.

  3. Nicola

    Loving the colours in this dish

  4. barbacaos

    Wow, I love this CSA project! Must be a refreshing approach to cooking, with the wonderful constraint of using what you get from the Community

    1. withthegrains

      It is! The Urban Farmer definitely pushes me even more. I’m always offering to run to the store and buy extra ingredients, but he really likes us to stick to the CSA food as much as possible.

  5. Cait

    How do you think rutabaga or radishes would fare in this dish?

      1. Cait

        I did use the rutabaga, unfortunately our radishes didn’t make it in time to use them. IT WAS SO GOOD. We didn’t use the Sage liquor (but we live in Philly so we did get the other one they have – SNAP, to make fall drinks with) but the crust turned out great. Held together well until I wanted to crumble it in with the veg’s on my plate. It was the perfect texture and amount to go with the veggies. This dish has completely sold me on beets, sweet potatoes and rutabagas, as if I wasn’t before 😀 !!!

      2. Quelcy Kogel

        Thanks for reporting back, and I’m glad you liked it! I LOVE Snap! I like to mix it into whipped cream and serve it with coffee for special brunches or just mornings when you need to feel a little extra special. 😉 Here’s to rutabagas!

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