peasant pies in mission bay....a little less than a handful
I'm always on the constant lookout for a quick and easy lunch I can grab on the way to work which won't break my wallet (you know, like those dang $10 sandwiches!! Yes, I can beat a dead horse over and over till it changes!). I'm particularly fond of things small, hand held and not some kind of salad. That's the trouble when you work in a place where I can't heat anything up, lots of....ugh, salads. Sometimes I just want something different, even if it might cool off a bit before I actually get to eat it.
Into this food journey of mine comes Peasant Pies. They aren't exactly new and have three spots across the city. There is one in Mission Bay near the UCSF campus I've walked by many a time. And, each time I think, I really should stop in there. I'm sure we've all been there. It is just one of those kind of places you figure you'll try one day, but never sure why you don't just buck up and go in. Well, I bucked and here I am.
Handheld pies are nothing new really. You know, hot pockets, pot pies, those things from Sage Bakehouse. Peasant Pies are a combo of pot pie meets hot pocket as a matter of fact. With their crimped little edges, it is exactly what they look like.
The pie crusts are a mix of unbleached and whole wheat flour mixed with yeast, olive oil, salt and water. They have ten filling flavors to choose from. Nine everyday ones and a special flavor of the month. I decided to just stick with regular options and go old-school meat and veggies.
Scrambled eggs mixed with Jack cheese, caramelized onions and smoked ham chunks. They heat these up for you when you order them, though I think mine could have benefited from a little more time in the convection heater upper oven. Plus, the mix on the inside seemed a tad watery, runny as opposed to cheesy and gooey. Kind of like when you add a dash of milk to eggs then don't scramble them enough. Off putting for sure. Also, had Jack cheese not been mentioned in the description, I wouldn't have known that's what it was. Jack is supposed to have a pepper kick which was missing here. The inside came off as more mush with little flavor as opposed to anything else.
The "pie crust" is more like a thin whole wheat roll shell. Keeping it thin did help make sure it was sufficiently cooked all the way through without having any dough like bits. It's nice, but nothing real special.
Hey! One of my healthy options! Spinach and feta pie. Well, they don't skimp on the spinach, that is for sure. Though the feta here seemed to suffer the same fate as the Jack, it came across as flavorless and watery. Maybe it absorbed water from the spinach? Plus, there wasn't that much in there causing it to be more like a ball of cooked spinach surrounded by some bread. It was also missing some flavor. Not bad per se, just blah.
Still on a veggie kick! Mushrooms, zucchini, carrots, onions, Jack and bleu cheese. Okay, I liked this one the best of them all. Veggies weren't overcooked. You could taste each one. Still couldn't taste the Jack, did taste the bleu, but it wasn't overpowering to all the other stuff in there nor did it have the watery issue. If it is consistently like this, I'd get it again.
Ground chicken, carrots, potatoes, celery, peas and dill. I ordered this one hoping to have some great Swanson's chicken pot pie childhood flashback. What I got was what you see above. A minced melange of filling without any kind of sauce that came across as nothing but dry. Does this have potential? Yes, but it needs something saucy to help it out. Even some of that watery cheese might have helped! With the ground chicken, potatoes, other mashy kind of veggies and the bread shell, it just tastes thick. And dry, did I say dry? I wanted it to be better without having to get my own sauce to dip it in.
At $3.85 a pop, the pies are decent size and an okay cost for what you get. However, like the flavors they offer, everything is pretty basic and not exactly exciting out of the box combos. Not really a knock, more of a know before you go. These pies are a try to appeal to everyone food. Which, if you are catering an office lunch, works well enough. If you are looking for a fun, different lunch, not so much. Maybe I'd feel different if they had tasted better. Doing comfort food appealing flavors is fine, but if you are going to something many folks offer, you need to do it really well in order to stand out above others. Granted, these are hand held pies and not, say, the ubiquitous fried chicken sandwich, but shape doesn't change the fact it's meat, bread and veggies. This town is full of that combo in other more flavorful versions than these.