The pie effortlessly straddles a number of culinary occasions, from forming irresistible dinner table centrepieces to hearty little treats packed up for picnics. Once you've mastered the basic art of ingredient preparation the sky's your limit in terms of fillings and flavours, with the ceremonial draping of pastry and quick sweep of egg glaze the finishing touches for the perfect speedy supper. With high quality ready made pastry easily available these days – even Mary Berry admits to using shop bought filo – the process becomes even easier, and you can focus instead on perfecting your crimping.
This collection of easy pie recipes aims to provide some new inspiration for both quick, impressive meals and tasty treats for eating on the go. For a spectacular pescatarian Sunday lunch alternative try Danny Kingston's easy fish pie recipe, packed with hot-smoked fish and topped with golden puff pastry, or if you've gone for a roast dinner instead give Shaun Rankin's Chicken and mushroom pie a go as a delicious (and economical) way of using up any leftovers. James Ramsden's Sausage and egg picnic pies are a fantastic alternative to Scotch eggs, while Sally Abé's Mixed berry custard pie recipe makes the perfect portable sweet snack.