Heard about the Primal diet? It’s sweeping my family at the moment – it’s like the Paleo diet where you don’t eat bread or wheat, except with Primal you’re allowed cheese, wine and chocolate. Woohoo, I love it, a civilised diet.
So this weekend when I was faced with a surfeit of cheese, a Primal pie seemed to provide me a solution. It would use up some of the leftover cheese currently loitering in my fridge, and let me try out a recipe for a flourless pie crust, a Primal pie crust.
Because my cheesey friends I am swamped by a tsunami of cheese at the moment. Not that I am complaining but I’ve got leftover cheese, I’ve got gifted cheese and of course I can’t help it, I keep on buying cheese.
So whilst this pie is unlike anything our primal, pre-historic ancestors would’ve made, it uses up all my cheesey bits and bobs.
The crust is made of ground almonds rather than flour and coconut oil is used instead of butter. Very non-dairy I know but the pie filling is full to the brim with cheese and cream, so don’t worry I ain’t going dairy-free anytime soon.
The result is a deliciously moorish pie. The almond crust is light and crispy yet melts in your mouth. Short and nutty, it’s a wonderful counterpoint to the sharp, richness of the cheese.
Heat the oven to 160 C. Grease a 9′ metal pie tin. A removable base is best.
Mix almonds and salt, rub in coconut oil ’til it’s like bread crumbs.
Lightly beat egg, and combine with almond mixture.
Mix ’til it forms a ball.
Press into the tin, blind bake for 10 minutes. While you are baking the crust, start making the filling.
Note: You can make this in a food processor, I just don’t have one.
2 onions – peeled and sliced into rings
1 Tblsp olive oil
2-3 sprigs of thyme
200 g cheese – I used leftover Brie, Blue and Emmental. But just what ever you’ve got, plus a nubbins of Parmesan for grating on top.
265 ml cream
Salt and pepper
Nutmeg – a smidgeon only.
Heat olive oil and gently cook onions until they start to caramelise. Add the thyme leaves once they’ve started to cook. This will take about 10 minutes.
Chop cheeses into rough chunks and lay over the pie crust. Next layer over the onions.
Whisk cream, eggs and a few gratings of nutmegs. Gently pour over the onion and cheese, and sprinkle the Parmesan over the top. Bake for 30 minutes or until the cream mixture is set.
Delicious with a salad and a glass of Chardonnay. And, if you are beyond Primal a chunk of crunchy bread.