Filo Pie With Tomato & Coriander Sauce

A pie with a difference - no need to worry about making pastry as it uses sheets of filo - that delicate crust from Greece and the Eastern Mediterranean and a filling which has much more to do with Mexico - half way around the globe in one dish.


14oz (400g) tin cooked Pinto Beans or 7oz (200g) dried Pinto Beans
1 medium Onion
2 cloves Garlic
small bunch fresh Coriander
2 medium Courgettes
small tin Sweet Corn or 4 oz (100g) frozen or fresh Sweet Corn
1 block Smoked Tofu
1 pint (600ml) Béchamel Sauce - see seperate page
pinch Cayenne Pepper
pinch Paprika

Pastry Top
6 sheets Filo Pastry
blob of Margarine

Tomato & Coriander Sauce
1 tin (14oz/400g) tin Tomatoes
1 small Onion
1 clove Garlic
small bunch fresh Coriander
¼ pint (150ml) Tomato Juice
Sunflower Oil
Salt and Pepper


  1. Soak the pinto beans overnight if you can. Rinse and drain them, then cover with fresh water in a largish pan. Cover and bring to the boil. Allow to cook until soft, which will take about an hour. The beans will cook unsoaked fairly well if you forget to soak them, but they will take a bit longer. Of course if you use a can just rinse the contents and drain.
  2. Let the filo pastry thaw out, either in the fridge or covered with a damp tea towel.
  3. Peel and finely chop the onion. Peel and crush the garlic. Put a little oil in a frying pan and heat on a medium light, add the onion and garlic. Sauté until the onion is soft, then set aside in a mixing bowl.
  4. Wash the courgettes, top and tail them. Cut them into quarters lengthways, then chop them into small chunks. Sauté in a little oil using the pan you cooked the onions in, but do not let them brown. After about five minutes add a dash of shoyu and cook on for a few minutes more to allow them to absorb the flavour and soften. Add to the mixing bowl.
  5. Wash and drain the coriander. Chop coarsely and add to the mixing bowl.
  6. If using a tin of sweet corn just drain the liquid, rinse and add the corn to the mixture in the bowl. Fresh or frozen corn should be cooked in enough boiling water to cover, or microwaved with a spot of water in a covered container. Add to the mixture.
  7. Cube the block of tofu into smallish dice. Add the cooked beans and tofu to the mixture in the bowl. Stir all the ingredients together adding a good pinch of salt and pepper.
  8. Now prepare the béchamel sauce, according to the recipe available from the index page. When cooked add the pinches of cayenne and paprika.
  9. Take the filling mixture and put it in a shallow, oblong pie dish or tin and pour the sauce over it.
  10. It is now ready to have the crust put on.
  11. Preheat the oven to Gas mark 4, 180°C, 350°F.
  12. Prepare a small dish of melted margarine. If your pastry is not already covered with a damp tea towel take it out of its packet and cover it with one now.
  13. Unwrap the first sheet of filo and carefully lay it flat on a clean work surface. Gently brush the entire sheet with some of the melted margarine and lay the next sheet on top. Repeat until all the filo is layered in a neat stack. After you remove each sheet from the pack re-cover the rest or it will dry and be very brittle.
  14. Place the complete pastry top over the pie filling and, either trim the edges to fit the pie dish or fold them under to fit! Some people find it easier to assemble the filo crust on a clean tea towel which can then be inverted onto the top of the pie. Pop the pie in the preheated oven for approximately 20 minutes until the pastry is crisp and pale brown in colour.
  15. Whilst the pie is cooking, prepare the Tomato and Coriander Sauce
  16. Peel and finely chop the onion. Peel and crush the garlic and fry, with the onion, in a little oil until soft, then add the chopped tomatoes and tomato juice. Let it come to the boil then reduce the heat and simmer.
  17. Wash the coriander, remove the stalks and finely chop before adding this to the sauce. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then allow to carry on cooking until the pie is ready to serve.
  18. Try serving with rice and roasted red peppers or one of our salads. To roast peppers, just wash them, cut lengthways into wide slices, de-seed and put on a oven-proof tray. Drizzle on a little olive oil and roast in a hot oven Gas mark 7, 220°C, 425°F. until they just start to burn, yummy!

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