Chunk of Devon’ Mushroom Stroganoff crowned Best Vegan Pie 2023 at the prestigious British Pie Awards.
Chunk have been working hard to create something super creamy and delicious and are pleased to say that it wowed the judges at British Pie Awards this year and was crowned the winner of the Vegan Category.
The Mushroom Stroganott pie that impressed the judges so much features a rich creamy sauce using ground cashews. A glug of brandy gives it a depth of flavour along with a hint of paprika and dash of thyme. The wonderful stroganoff inspired filling uses large chestnut mushroom slices to provide texture.
Matthew O’Callaghan of the British Pie Awards claims that vegan and vegetarian pies are growing in popularity – the vegan category was the one with most entries in 2021 and has remained popular since then.
It’s not just a movement towards more plant-based foods and healthier meals that has caused a shift in the industry in recent years. The current economic climate means many are opting to eat at home more often, rather than visiting restaurants, cafes and pubs to dine. The cost-of-living crisis has people reaching for pies more than ever – a pie makes for a simple treat meal without the price-tag of eating out!
But what makes an award-winning pie?
“Good pastry. It should be crisp, evenly baked, golden, not over processed and well-seasoned,” says Sally Jayne-Wright, previous judge of the vegan category at the British Pie Awards.
Although ordinarily Chunk use butter pastry, sustainable palm oil is used in their vegan products which gives the pastry a lovely texture with a bit of bite.
It goes without saying that the filling is also important. Chunk aim to always fill the pies to the brim with meat, veggies and gravy, avoiding those air pockets. The new vegan pie is no exception.
Back in 2018, Chunk of Devon changed the pastry glaze from egg to a pea-based glaze and the first vegan product was born – the Roast Veg Pasty. This simple recipe featuring a roasted vegetable mix with a few herbs always performed well at various award ceremonies. There is now a total of six plant-based products that the ‘hunks’ (vegan or not!) enjoy thoroughly.
It has been extremely popular since its launch with vegans and mushroom lovers alike!