response to my inquiry regarding Bennett's Pies (in a previous edition
of the Walkerville Times) was overwhelming. I received telephone
calls from twelve individuals including former workers, friends
and associates of the now defunct Bennett's Pies, and from some
direct descendants of the Bennett family.
Bennett Bakery was located on Ontario Street between Monmouth and
Argyle Streets. The business was run from the adjacent building
west of the Bennett apartment building. To this day, the Bennett
name is emblazoned on the front of the building as a lasting memorial
to the Bennett family. It pleases me to tell you that the Bennett's
were hard working and very friendly folks. Not one unkind word was
spoken about them from the many callers who contacted me.
managed to compile a recipe of mixed sorts by using all the relayed
information. The basic recipe was quite simple but due to many variations,
a simple task became quite complex. For any readers who might be
interested, I share the results of my findings. Remember now, this
is a BASIC recipe (see sidebar).
some cases, sage was offered as a seasoning but in no specific quantity.
One caller suggested using cold, mashed potatoes as a substitute
for the bread crumbs. I experimented using the bread crumbs with
very satisfactory results. The "secret" to any pie is to ensure
that the filling is cold before the pie is assembled. Most callers
offered that advice in mutual agreement. In addition, most advised
that lard, not shortening was used by Bennett's to make the pastry.
In addition, their meat pies were completely assembled before baking.
experience has shown that a meat pie of this nature is best cooked
in a 375F oven for 45 minutes or until the top crust is golden brown.
It was also pointed out that water was used to seal the top crust
to the lower one to prevent the meat filling from escaping during
remain graciously indebted to all those who contacted me. Every
caller was sincere, friendly and so happy to be able to offer their
opinions. I could not help but feel so privileged to be an attentive
listener because in every case, their phone manners and sincerity
were impeccable. It seems in today's society, GOOD manners are almost
forgotten. Again, I remain deeply indebted to all who took the time
to call me. I simply cannot say, "Thank you!" enough.
& Detroit Ferry Company: The Last Ferry