These turned out very well indeed. The sausage lends nice flavor to the filling, and the beans stretch it out so it's much cheaper and less processed as a final product. The spinach variation is darn tasty, too. If you're only up for making one filling at a time, just double it or halve the dough recipe. Or freeze half the dough. Or make a loaf of bread to go with it. Or make a pizza. You get the idea.
Procedure pics follow the recipes.
2 cups lukewarm water
1 tsp. dry yeast
pinch/drizzle sweetener of choice
2-3 cups whole-wheat or similar whole-grain flour (or white)
2-3 cups white bread flour (or all-purpose flour with added gluten)
1 tsp. salt
1-2 Tbsp. olive oil
Combine water, yeast, and sweetener in a large bowl. Wait to make sure the yeast is active. Add all of the whole-grain flour along with the salt and olive oil. Stir in white flour until you can't stir, then turn out onto a floured table or counter and knead 10 minutes, adding flour as needed. Coat the dough ball in oil, cover, and let rise until doubled. While it's rising, make the filling(s).
1 link apple-sage sausage (Field Roast brand) or your favorite equivalent. Gimme Lean would be good here, too.
1/2 medium onion, minced
1 large rib celery, minced
1 small bunch lacinto kale or collards, cut into short, thin ribbons. Stems are fine.
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1-1/2 cups cooked lentils, adzuki beans (what I used), or navy beans. One drained can would be about right.
A couple slugs from the beer or white wine you're drinking (or open one just for this--the flavor is perfect. Or just use veg broth.)
Rosemary, sage, salt, and pepper to taste
Crumble the sausage and saute briefly until lightly browned. Remove from pan and set aside. Saute the onion, celery, and kale until just tender. Use the beer or other liquid to help this along. Stir in the lentils or beans and then season to taste. I used rosemary and sage in my bean-cooking water, so I just added salt at this stage. The mixture should be moist enough to clump together a little when you stir it, but not wet.
1 medium onion, minced
4-6 cloves garlic, minced
3-4 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Two 10 oz. packages frozen chopped spinach
4-6 Tbsp. lemon juice
salt to taste
Large handful pine nuts
Saute onion and garlic until soft. Add the spinach and lemon juice, and saute until spinach is thoroughly thawed. Salt and adjust lemon juice to taste. Toss in the pine nuts. See above for consistency of filling mixture.
Punch down dough and knead a couple turns to get out the air bubbles. Divide into 12 pieces. On a floured board, roll each piece into a circle roughly 7 inches in diameter and about 1/8" thick. Slightly off-center, scoop 1/2 cup to 2/3 cup filling onto a dough circle. Leave at least 1/2" on all sides. Moisten half of the edge with a finger dipped in water. Then fold the dough over and use a fork to seal the edges. Transfer carefully to a baking sheet. Prick the top a few times to let steam escape. Bake 15-20 minutes at 425 or until lightly browned. I got five pies out of each filling recipe. Bake any extra dough as pita (crank the oven up to 500, and for best puffing let the dough re-rise about 20 minutes before baking.
Sausage filling, ready to go
Mmm, dough balls. That soda bottle is my rolling pin, btw. Works great for stuff like this!
Sorry about the blur. Sausage pie, ready to be sealed.
Fresh out of the oven! The spinach ones leaked a little more, but nothing disastrous.