New England Pork Pies
Could we create a home version of these beloved New England treats?
Why This Recipe Works
The hallmark of these individual pies is their juicy, soft, and extra-savory pork filling. To achieve this, we combined ground pork with finely ground Ritz Crackers, which incorporated evenly, bound the pork together, held in moisture to keep it juicy, and added a good deal of fat to give it an ultratender—not bouncy—texture. A mixture of melted butter, sour cream, and an egg pulsed into flour yielded a smooth, pliable dough that baked up into a rich, crumbly-yet-sturdy crust. To ensure that the crust baked evenly, we divided some of the dough into six ⅓-cup portions (enough to line six ceramic ramekins) and then rolled each portion into a round before fitting the rounds into the ramekins. For the pie tops, we rolled out the remaining dough, stamped out circles with an inverted ramekin, and sealed the pies by rolling the edges up into a rope-like border. We made a quick gravy by thickening our favorite beef broth with a bit of cornstarch; once the pies were baked to golden brown, we poured the gravy in through the vent holes.