Wednesday, 7 October 2009


Between meetings today we drove between Christchurch and Dunedin. We forgot how long it takes. So the drive was made easy by the anticipation of one of the great culinary delights of the south. A MacGregors Mutton Pie at Palmerston..

They make your arteries quiver.

They are made with cold water pastry which is made with lard. In the middle was a pattie of mutton ( not lamb mince but smelly old mutton)
and it was softened with breadcrumb so it held together nicely all soft and squishy and it was laced with salt and white pepper.

And the little pattie floated in a silky pool of warm fat.

There was a hole on the top and you poured off the excess fat. Then we used to eat the crunchy pastry off and then the rest of the pastry and finally we would consume the pattie.

It was saturated fat overload and a dream to eat. So from about Ashburton we started to think of the mutton pie from MacGregors Bakery in Palmerston.

At about Timaru we needed to pee. but we held on to shorten the time it would take to get to Palmerston as we knew that the bakery was about to close.

We finally got there, dashed for the loo. Then off to the bakery. There were two mutton pies left. The owner assured me they were fresh.

We sat outside in the rental. We grabbed three serviettes in anticipation of having to pour out the fat. Nothing came. Not a drop - it was dry.

We nibbled at the pastry and noticed it wasn't the gluey white colour but sort of yellowish.
It was just okay but not made of lard.

So we lifted the lid on our childhood memory and were faced with a pattie that looked just like a MacDonalds sausage pattie.

We scrunched it into the packet and chucked it on the floor in abject disappointment.

We didn't cry , no really we didn't - but we sighed a lot all the way to Karitane. And then things got all blurry and we turned on the wipers to clear the windscreen. It didn't work. But we werent crying... truly....We wouln't cry over a crap pie....


gravedodger said...

sadly another icon collapses under the weight of inexorable change some call progress. Hopefully the seafood,Speights and southern hospitality will eventually overcome the pain of disappointment you were forced to endure.

alex Masterley said...

The sad offering of pie you describe makes the ones I made all those years ago at Laurensons during Uni holidays seem like the height of gourmet expereince! and they were shite!

euminedes said...

We are not fans of speights but we did have a bottle of Emmersons Pilsner to wash down our excellent chinese takeaway .. We were keen to try the Invercargill " Old Smokey" but the bottle store owner suggested it was like supping on smokey bacon.. We like our mash sour..

CW said...


Anonymous said...

You should have stopped in Oamaru for a Willet's pie
Far superior, made with real short pastry and yes you can tip the fat out the neat little hole

homepaddock said...

Some tastes are better as memories, sigh.

Anonymous said...

Damn BB, that makes my mouth water. I miss the Hopgoods Mutton Pies I ate during my year in Invercargill terribly. So much yummy fat. So peppery. The perfect hangover cure, especially with a few drops of Lea & Perrins on top. MMMMMM

Anonymous said...

Share your concern over the mutton pie. I threw mine out. You'd have been better to grab a mince one at Sim's in Tinwald, or a peppery May's pie from Timaru. Both are much under-rated.