This isn’t so much a pie as it is a stew, but the baking powder biscuits certainly give it the look, feel and flavour of a good ol’ homemade meat pie. Of course, you can forgo the biscuits. Either way, it tastes great.
3 ruffed grouse breasts, bone attached
1 celery stalk, sliced
1 onion, sliced
1 carrot, sliced
1 tbsp pickling spice
1 bay leaf
4 cups water
1 onion, chopped
2 celery stalks, sliced
2 carrots, sliced
3-4 potatoes, peeled and cubed
3/4 cup frozen peas
2 tbsp cornstarch
Salt and black pepper, to taste
2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/4 cup cold lard (or shortening)
2/3 cup cold milk
Place all the ingredients in a large saucepan or stockpot; cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 45 minutes.
Take out breasts; debone and cube meat, then set aside. Strain cooking liquid, discarding solids. Reserve 1 cup of liquid and return remaining stock to saucepan.
Add vegetables to stock in saucepan. Return to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes; vegetables should still be firm. Stir in cubed grouse; return to simmer.
Whisk together cornstarch and reserved cup of stock; stir into pot and simmer until stew is thickened. Season with salt and pepper, then transfer to baking dish.
Baking Powder Biscuits
Preheat oven to 375°F. Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt, then cut in lard using two knives or a pastry blender. Add milk and lightly mix until evenly moistened (the less mixing, the more tender the biscuits).
On a lightly floured surface, gently knead for just a few turns until dough holds together. Pat out to ¾-inch thickness and cut into 2-inch circles.
Top stew with biscuits; bake until biscuits are golden brown on top and the bottoms are not doughy (about 25 minutes). If you choose to omit the biscuits, simply cover casserole dish with a lid and bake for 20 minutes.