Hot and steamy meat pies are at the front and centre of Australian cuisine. You’ll find them at most pubs, cafes and petrol stations as well as sporting games around the country. They’re also the cause of immense spillage and temperature struggles unless you’re in on the secret hack that makes an absolute gusher of a pie easier to eat.
But first, let’s give you a tasty bite of what an iconic Aussie meat pie is if you’re new to the country. It’s essentially a simple pastry crust filled with a rich meat-heavy centre combined with gravy. If you’re at a gourmet bakery you’ll be able to try some fancier fillings such as steak and pepper, beef and curry and chicken and leek.
It was just two weeks ago I had my first meat pie in Australia (after having lived here for almost a year, sorry) and I wish I’d seen Reddit user u/-jsm-1‘s thread before my new foodie venture. The user posted a picture of a meat pie stabbed with a fork, kicking off a discussion that not only frowned the usage of forks to relieve the heat, but brought up a hack that will change your pie-eating ways.
If you weren’t already in on the secret, turns out all you need to do, as user PsychoNerd91 explained, is “pop off the top, and use the crust as a dip spoon until it’s manageable to take that thing and scoff it down.”
After reading that, I got my colleagues to tell me about their own pie-eating ways to see what the consensus was.
My colleague Zara pointed out you could “rip the top off and eat that first. Leave it for the steam to escape for a minute. Squeeze in a hefty heaping of tommy sauce and eat the filling with a fork, then eat the casing of the pie last.”
This is all well and good but what if you’re at a footy game? Ante gave a neat little tweak to the hack above:
“I like to cut a little hole in the top and put some sauce inside before I attack it with a knife & fork, that way you don’t burn yourself and you keep clean.”
Otherwise, as fellow staffer Georgia said, “Put some tom sauce on it and get into it. Gushing (gross word) is all part of the experience. And if you can’t handle the heat, I worry about your palate.”
Overall, people in my office seemed to be in agreement with popping the lid off, barring one person, who has a shockingly different way of eating pies.
“I chop up the meat pie in a bowl so it’s in tiny squares, mix it with the sauce and then sit there with a fork and eat the pie square by tiny square.” – Louis
I’m going to have to put my foot down on this but for the rest, I’ll leave it to the pros.
Give us a shout in the comments if you’ve got any smart hacks for eating pies.