The steak and mushroom family size pie.
Photos by John Bruno Turiano
Most Americans hear pie and they think pizza or dessert (Key lime yum!). But if it was up to Jason Hicks of Larchmont, the initial association with pie would be that of the English sort: a savory British pub staple that consists of a puff pastry top crust and – in certain instances – a bottom crust made of suet (the hard white fat on the kidneys and loins of cows) and an array of fillings in between.
“A pie to the average Brit is in the DNA part of our culture,” says Hicks, who was born in Stratford-upon-Avon and was brought up in the Cotswolds. “Growing up going to football games (soccer!) you would make sure you had enough money for a pie at half time, just in the same way you would have a hot dog at a baseball game in the States.”
Necessitated by the COVID-19-related closures of his restaurants in the city (Jones Wood Foundry, The Shakespeare, and Hook’d on the Hudson), Hicks founded the delivery only Pie & Mash in April — he sold more than 70 in the first week with no more than word-of-mouth and Facebook chatter. The pies come ready-to-bake.
“The premise being built meals for the family without the prep time and clean up whilst maintaining an element of home cooked.”
His pies stick to British tradition – which means the comforting, hearty selections like steak and kidney, steak and mushroom, lamb and rosemary, and any potato-topped ones sell the best. He introduced lighter, more summer-centric recipes but they tended to not do as well.
The key to a good crust? “Don’t overwork the dough and make sure that all fats are cold.”
He’s expanded his menu beyond just pies to some of the signatures at Jones Wood Foundry and The Shakespeare. such as Scotch eggs, bangers and mash, and bubble & squeak (a fried potato and leftover veggie mash), and even a few sweets (the banoffee pie – bananas and toffee — is exceptional).
Hicks is looking for a space to open a small storefront to sell pies (both raw and cooked) plus another British pub classic, fish ’n’ chips. “Ideally I would need enough back-of-house space to create a commissary. This would make the logistics easier and allow me to open up to more towns and develop the product line.”
Pie & Mash
Deliveries are made to Larchmont, Rye, Mamaroneck, and Rye Neck.
Order by Wednesday 5 p.m. for Friday afternoon delivery.