Make Calum Franklin's pork, prune and sage picnic pie

As executive chef of the Holborn Dining Room, Calum Franklin knows a thing or two about quality pies. This sage sensation is well worth the effort

Serves 8

Preparation time 30 minutes

Cooking time 2 hours

This pork, prune and sage picnic pie from Calum Franklin is a definite upgrade from your typical Melton Mowbray pork pie. It is, however, worth noting that this bad boy isn't for the impatient and will need to be left to cool overnight. Don't be put off by that wait time though. The recipe itself is fool-proof and, as we all know, patience makes for perfect pie.


For the pastry

  • 1kg ready-made shortcrust pastry


For the farce 

  • 1kg pork shoulder (finely minced)
  • 450g smoked bacon (cut into 1.5cm dice)
  • 100g prune (finely chopped)
  • 2 tbsp sage (finely chopped)
  • 5g table salt
  • 1g white pepper
  • 5g white mustard seeds


For the jelly

  • 6 gelatine leaves
  • 300ml chicken stock
  • 4 sage stalks
  • 100ml dry cider


Tools you'll need

  • 20cm non-stick springform cake tin
  • Rolling pin
  • Egg brush
  • Temperature probe
  • Medium saucepan
  • Whisk
  • Sieve
  • Small funnel


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C fan
  2. Cut off ¼ of pastry dough, and retain for lid. Roll out remaining dough into a circle at 0.5cm thickness.
  3. Line a 20cm non-stick springform cake tin, pressing the pastry against the sides and base, leaving a 2cm overlap on the top of the tin to join the lid. Chill this pie case in the fridge for 10 minutes, and then pack in the meat farce.
  4. Roll out the dough for the lid as before, and place on the top. Crimp the pastry over together where it meets to make a seam, and then make a small hole in the centre of the lid for steam to escape. Brush the top of the pie with the beaten egg yolk.
  5. Cook in the oven for 1 hour, or until internal temperature reaches 65°C in the middle then leave to cool overnight.
  6. Soak gelatine in cold water for 5 minutes.
  7. Then boil the cider in a pan until reduced by half. Add the chicken stock and sage stalks, and turn off heat. Squeeze excess water off the gelatine, and whisk into stock.When fully incorporated, pass through a sieve and carefully pour into top of pie through a small funnel.
  8. Allow to set in fridge for 1 hour then remove from the cake tin, ready to serve.

From Calum Franklin; photography by John Carey.

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