[Updated July 19, 2015]
Children love these bite-size meat pies. The filling can be prepared the night before. Pie shells can be made a week ahead and stored in a sealed bag in the refrigerator. You can also use these shells to make mini-fruit tarts: Fill them with gluten-free pudding, top with sliced fruit and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.
½ cup white rice flour
¼ cup sorghum flour
½ teaspoon xanthan gum
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
½ cup organic non-hydrogenated shortening
3-4 tablespoons water
½ pound ground beef
1 tablespoon oil, as needed
½ cup onions, chopped
¼ cup red pepper, finely chopped, optional
2 tablespoons white rice flour
1½ cups brown rice, cooked
½ cup canned black beans, rinsed and drained
1 cup gluten-free beef broth
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon cumin
½ teaspoon oregano
⅛ teaspoon chili powder
2 tablespoons cilantro or parsley, chopped, optional
1. To make shells, preheat oven to 425 degrees. In a large bowl, combine flours, xanthan gum, salt and sugar. With pastry cutter or fork, cut in shortening until mixture looks like small peas. Sprinkle in water, one tablespoon at a time, until flour is moistened and dough almost cleans the side of the bowl.
2. Gather dough into a ball. Shape into a flattened round on wax paper. Place another piece of wax paper over the dough and roll it to ¼-inch thickness with a rolling pin. Cut into 3-inch circles. Place circles into 6 ungreased medium-size muffin cups, pressing dough into each cup and up the sides. Prick dough 3 times with a fork.
3. Place muffin cups into preheated oven and bake for 8 to 10 minutes or until golden. Remove from oven and cool. Remove from tins and cool on rack. Wrap and store on counter. Refrigerate if not used within 2 days.
4. To make meat filling, brown ground beef in a saucepan. Set aside.
5. In a large skillet, heat oil and sauté onions and red pepper until onions are translucent. Sprinkle rice flour over vegetables and slowly add broth, stirring over medium heat until sauce is smooth.
6. Add meat to skillet, along with cooked brown rice, black beans, salt, spices and cilantro. Simmer mixture for 15 to 20 minutes. Refrigerate until ready to use.
7. To assemble meat pies, fill each shell with meat filling. (There will be filling left over.) Wrap each pie tightly in plastic wrap and tuck into lunchbox, along with a small icepack.
Each pie contains 403 calories, 25g total fat, 11g saturated fat, 0g trans fat, 25mg cholesterol, 488mg sodium, 35g carbohydrate, 3g fiber, 11g protein.