1 Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C (Gas mark 6 or 400F). Tip - Beware – oven thermostats do vary a lot, but you’ll probably know if yours runs very hot and adjust accordingly.
2 No need to defrost - you are cooking it from frozen, in the foil dish. Tip – It’s best to put some foil or greaseproof paper under the pie on a baking tray – it makes washing up much easier.
3 Glaze pies lightly with a little beaten egg and milk. Tip – If you repeat this a couple of times during cooking it will be shinier.
4 Small, individual pies take approx 1 hr, medium pies around 1.5 hrs and large roughly 2 – 2.5hrs. Tip – Keep an eye on the pie to make sure the crimps don’t “catch”. If they do, turn the pie in the oven to avoid hot spots and/or turn the oven down a little.
5 Cooking time varies between ovens but the pastry should be golden brown, completely cooked with caramelising juices oozing from the holes (this creates a characteristic sticky, savoury taste)
The pies taste (and smell) just amazing hot straight from the oven but the foil is a lot easier to remove when the pie is cold. The choice is, of course, yours. If you are taking the foil off, snip or tear it to make the job easier.
Once cooled keep refrigerated, they’ll be fine for 7 days (if they don’t get eaten in the first half hour!).