Chicken Pie

Chicken Pie

I do not use a base in this pie, rather just fold a generous portion of pastry over a ramekin or pie dish to seal in the flavoursome meat an avoid the disaster of a soggy pie bottom, as often happens with chicken pie.  Please see my Good Butter Pastry recipe, or by all means use a good bought pastry – it does need to be fairly thick though so if using bought ready rolled sheets, double them over to get that thick flaky tower of pastry on your pie.

 

800 grams chicken thigh fillets, skinned and boned, cut into generous chunks

1 leek, finely chopped

1 carrot, peeled and finely chopped

2 sticks of celery, peeled and finely chopped

1 rasher of bacon, finely chopped

1 large potato, peeled and finely chopped

1 garlic clove, crushed

2 cups of warmed milk

1 cup crisp white wine

1 teaspoon French mustard

1 bay leaf

½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

Pepper

1 tablespoon each of chopped sage, thyme, parsley and chives

1 tablespoon butter

3 tablespoons plain flour

 

Pre-heat oven to 220°C

 

Over a low heat, poach the chicken in the white wine with a bay leaf, garlic, leeks, carrot, celery and potato until the vegetables are tender and cooked through, allowing the wine to reduce down.  Remove the bay leaf.  Add the bacon and increase the heat. Once chicken is very soft and moist, remove from the heat and set aside to cool.

Melt the butter in a saucepan and make a roux with the flour, cooking out the raw flour taste well.  Add a little of the chicken poaching liquor and then add the mustard and milk to form a thick white sauce, add the herbs and pepper and stir through the cheese.

Once the sauce is thick and seasoned to taste, stir through the chicken and vegetable mix.

Prepare individual pie dishes, ramekins or a single large pie dish by greasing it well and dusting with flour.

Divide the pie filling between the ramekins (should easily get 4 small or 6 medium ramekins) and lay over a generous pastry lid.

Fold the pastry down over the sides of the ramekin, making decorative indentations with a fork   Cut steam slits into the lid, brush with milk and bake in a hot oven for 15 minutes or until golden brown.