Venison Squash & Blackberry Pie

I love saving my favourite pie recipes for the colder months and this pie is definitely one of our faves! We love this delicious Scottish Venison, Squash and Blackberry Pie, it is so easy to cook especially since the filling is made throughout the day in the slow cooker. As a busy mum I love quick and easy hearty meals.

I used venison from the Scottish Highlands, butternut squash and blackberries in this recipe and the ingredients all worked so well together. It has all the flavours of Autumn with its hints of cinnamon and allspice too!

You can also use wild blackberries in this recipe, we call them brambles. They are so delicious and nutritious too and you can make so many delicious recipes with them throughout the Autumn months. If you can’t source wild blackberries you can also use shop bought blackberries too. They will work just as well in this recipe but we love foraging and its always more fun to source food for free than to buy them.

This recipe also works well with the following recipes and the three of them together would make a delicious Scottish meal.

Things you will need for this recipe:

  • A medium sized slow cooker or a family sized pressure cooker. I like the medium crockpot slow cooker and it has worked really well for us for years now. I look forward to upgrading to the larger family crockpot soon. I use the pressure king pressure cooker and it works really well at preparing slow cooked type foods in a shorter time. I do find my slow cooker is easier to use despite it taking longer and I find it easier to check the cooking process throughout the day.
  • You can make the pastry in a bowl with your bare hands…but…I love my Kitchen Aid and I use it for everything! I would recommend using a kitchen aid or other powerful food mixer for making your pastry dough.
  • I have used a le cruset pie dish for this recipe. You can also use a glass style dish or other available pie dish.
  • You will also need a chunky wooden chopping board and wooden rolling pin like I have used in the video. I find these are best to work with for rolling dough.

Venison Squash & Blackberry Pie Recipe

Slow Cooker Pie Filling:

  • 1 onion
  • 3-4 chopped carrots
  • 500g cubed venison
  • 2 chopped potatoes
  • 1/2 cup of flour
  • 1tsp of salt
  • 1/2 tsp of allspice
  • black pepper
  • 1tsp of cinnamon
  • 1/2 a butternut squash chopped
  • handful of blackberries
  • 250ml of water
  • 1tbsp of butter

Shortcrust Pastry:

  • 300g of plain flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 150g of butter
  • 3tbsp of cold water

Recipe Instructions:

  1. Prepare the slow cooker by warming it up to the desired temperature. I have used the high heat setting but you might be ok with anything from a medium to high setting. It will be different on all devices.
  2. Add all of the slow cooker pie filling ingredients apart from the water and butter.
  3. Mix them all together to ensure that the spices and the flour cover all the pieces of vegetables and meat.
  4. Add in the water and stir through well.
  5. Cook in the slow cooker until the meat is tender and the vegetables are melt in the mouth texture. This should be around 4-5 hrs on med-high.
  6. Cut up the larger pieces of meat if you desire and carefully add all of the slow cooker meat into a medium sized pie dish.
  7. Leave the pie dish with the venison filling to the side to cool slightly.
  8. Preheat the oven to 180 (160/170oc for a fan) and start preparing the pastry.
  9. Add the butter, salt and flour to the mixing bowl and mix well until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
  10. Turn on the mixture to a medium speed and carefully pour in the water. You might need more or less water than the 3tbsp and you want to aim for an easily manageable dough that isnt sticky or too dry.
  11. Keep aside a small part of dough to create a decorative topping if you wish.
  12. Roll out the dough on a floured surface into a large enough circle to cover the pie dish.
  13. Place the dough carefully across the pie dish and make several holes with a fork across the top as in the video above.
  14. Use your small piece of dough to create a design on the top of the pie if you wish. In the video above I created a small Scottish thistle and a Scottish flag…get creative!
  15. Place the pie in the oven for 25-30minutes or until the pastry is brown and cooked through. Keep a close eye, you do not want to burn it!
  16. Enjoy with greens, root vegetables or other seasonal vegetables or salads.

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