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The perfect Christmas gift for you or a loved one
Heat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. Tip the flour and butter into a food processor and process to fine crumbs. Add 2-3 tbsp cold water and pulse until it forms a firm dough. Tip out onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly to form a smooth ball. Roll out and line the base and sides of a 21-22cm deep flan tin or 20cm springform cake tin. Trim the edges and chill the tart case while you prepare the filling.
Put the eggs in a small pan and cover with cold water. Bring to the boil, then simmer for 4 mins. Cool quickly under running cold water and peel off the shells.
Chop the parsley and thyme. Tip the sausagemeat into a large bowl and add half the herbs, a little salt and plenty of freshly ground black pepper. Press a third of the sausagemeat over the base of the pastry case and make a circular trench in the sausagemeat. Trim the ends off each egg and line them up to form a ring of egg, then cover with the remaining sausagemeat, forming a smooth dome and making sure the eggs are completely covered.
Mix the remaining herbs with the breadcrumbs and oil, and sprinkle evenly over the pie. Place on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hr until the pastry is golden, the filling cooked and the topping crisp and golden. If there are any juices bubbling around the edge of the pie, carefully tip them into a jug and discard. Leave the pie to cool in the tin. Will keep in the fridge for a few days. Take to the picnic still in the tin covered in foil or cling film, and serve cut into thick slices with cornichons and salad, if you like.