The Frugal French Pantry October 2017. There is something very British about pies isn't there? If you walk around the average French supermarket there won't be a pie in sight. The closest you will get will be a quiche so, if you want comforting layers of meat covered in pastry for warming up on a cold day, you really have to make it yourself! As pies are so filling I decided to focus on them this month for my frugal article in The Deux Sevres Monthly magazine. As the magazine is for English speakers it had to be pie this month. I'm sure that my lovely French friends won't understand our British preoccupation with all things pie! My Chicken and Leek Pie ended up on the blog by accident this year. It's the sort of dinner we have all the time in the winter as it doesn't take too long to prepare and you can always use ready made pastry to save time. This is also a great pie for Mondays too. If you have any leftover chicken and vegetables from a roast just chop them up, add any leftover gravy and assemble the pie. As this is such a versatile, everyday pie I made the mistake of thinking it wasn't special enough for the blog but, I was wrong! It is now the most searched for and viewed recipe, despite its rustic appearance! This Chicken and Bacon Ring is not really a pie but it still gives you all the same sort of comfort. The difference with this is that it is made with croissant dough, although you could use puff pastry. There is no sauce to make as mayonnaise and cheese hold the filling together. I love the crunch of peppers in this dish but courgettes and mushrooms work well too so it is great in Spring and Autumn. In our house Steak and Kidney Pie is the king of puddings. My husband would argue that it really has to be cooked in a suet pudding but, as that involves steaming on the hob for hours and topping up with water, life is really too short! I've never seen suet for sale here either. I much prefer the method of cooking the meat in the slow cooker and making the pie the next day. This gives the flavours the chance to develop and makes sure that the beef is tender, as beef in France tends to be tough by British standards. The last dish to be featured in The Frugal French Pantry October 2017 is not really a 'pie' at all. Growing up a staple meal would be Cottage Pie, which is often confused with Shepherd's Pie which is lamb. It was never really a favourite but I gave it a revamp with a bit of red wine and a cheesy mustard mash and called it my Glam Cottage Pie. These pies are not meant to be posh. They are rustic, home meals which are filling and tasty. The pies can be served with extra vegetables on the side or added to the pie to make the meat go further. In days gone by potato would probably be served too but these dishes are already energy laden without! If you are eating frugally what are you serving this October?