When people find out that I am from Louisiana, most assume it’s South Louisiana, specifically New Orleans. However, there is another half of the state, North Louisiana, which is where I grew up in the Village of Ashland.
While South Louisiana is known for it’s Cajun Food, North Louisiana has some great culinary treats, too. One town in particular has inspired many of my culinary creations, Natchitoches LA. If you have ever watched the movie Steel Magnolias, you have seen this city. It is where the movie was filmed.
Although not my hometown, I spent a lot of time in Natchitoches, specifically at Northwestern State University. My high school’s football games were played at NSU’s stadium. Thus, many weekends were spent in Natchitoches cheering at the games. And many weekdays were spent carting around a cello on NSU’s campus, where I took private lessons and played in a youth orchestra.
Often, I would wind up grabbing something to eat while in town. What do I remember most? The Natchitoches Meat Pies from Lasyone’s. They were amazing. So amazing that my mom would purchase them by the case from a local shop. For a while now, I have been craving these, so I decided to figure out how to make them. Of course, with my little twist! 🙂
Although I found several recipes online, I ventured out on my own, using Chef John Folse’s recipe as inspiration. For the crust, I used my pizza dough recipe. As I binder, I stirred cream cheese into the mixture. And, instead of deep frying the pies, I opted to bake them. The result? Well, my entire family (kids, included) gave them two thumbs up. For me, that’s always a sign that I need to make a recipe a staple in our culinary repertoire.
Natchitoches Meat Pies
(Inspired by Chef John Folse’s recipe, which can be found HERE)
- 1/4 cup of olive oil
- 1 lb of ground beef (or 1/2 ground beef, 1/2 ground pork)
- 1 cup of onion, finely diced
- 1/2 cup of celery, finely diced
- 1/2 cup of red or orange bell pepper, finely diced
- 5 cloves of garlic, finely minced
- 1 T of Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 t of Cajun Seasonings
- Salt and Pepper, to taste (or use Cayenne Pepper for an extra kick of spice)
- 1 cup of creme cheese, room temperature
(I doubled this recipe.)
- 1 Tbsp. active dry yeast
- 1 cup warm water (105 to 115 degrees F.)
- 1 tsp. sugar
- 1 tsp. salt
- 2 Tbsp. olive oil
- 2 1/2 cups flour
Into a bowl, dissolve the yeast in the water with the sugar. Allow to sit for 10 minutes. (I use my stand mixture with dough attachment.) Add the rest of the ingredients in and mix. (At this point, you can use it immediately, or sit on counter until ready to form into pies.) Dump onto a floured surface. Knead into a smooth dough (five minutes or so). Roll out and cut into circles. (I used a cereal bowl.) Doubling the dough recipe yielded enough dough for at least 16 pies.
Spoon a generous portion of the cooked meat mixture onto the dough round. Crimp the edges together. (Or you may opt to ‘glue’ the edges with an egg wash.) Place on a greased cookie sheet. Make small slits in dough to vent steam. Bake thirty minutes at 400 degrees. Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes. Then, serve with ketchup or a chutney.