Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Tuesday Tasties No.11

Now we're in December, one of my favourite things to scoff is a good old fashioned pie. There's just something about the combination of something a little bit naughty (the pastry top), a gorgeous filling packed with big chunks of meat and just the right amount of veggies which seems to always hit the spot.

Chicken & Leek Pie
Don't be fooled into thinking that pies always need hours and hours of cooking to taste wonderful, this recipe can be done and on your table in under an hour.  This makes enough for four so Ad and I always have the leftovers for lunch the following day....DELICIOUS! You'll need:
  • Olive oil
  • 4 rashers of bacon, chopped into chunks
  • 1 tbsp of thyme - fresh or dried is up to you
  • 2 Leeks, chopped - I used a pack of baby leeks which is why they're so small
  • Around 400g of chopped chicken or turkey
  • 2 tbsp of flour
  • 500ml of chicken stock - I used a Stock Pot
  • 2 tbsp creme fraiche
  • 100g of crumbled chestnuts (any kind of nut will do, I actually used crumbled walnuts)
  • 1 beaten egg
  • Ready-made puff pastry
So first things first, pre-heat your oven to 200 degrees and lightly oil your pie dish. Then heat a little oil and fry the bacon and thyme together for a couple of minutes. Then add the chopped leeks and cook until they're starting to go translucent.
Once you've reached this stage, remove them from the pan and set aside.

In the same pan, add a little more oil and fry your chicken/turkey until it's starting to brown; this should take between 5-10 minutes. Then re-add the leek/bacon mixture and season to taste.
Then add your flour; this will help to thicken your sauce once you've added the stock. Cook this off for around a minute. Pop in the stock and bring the mixture to the boil. Then reduce the heat and simmer for a minute or two, you should notice the sauce starts to thicken. If this isn't the case you can always add a tiny bit more flour.
Remove the pie mixture from the heat and leave this for a little while. While it's cooling off you can measure out your pastry top for the pie.

Next, it's time to add the creme fraiche and your crumbled nuts. I recommended waiting a short while before doing this as I tend to find if I add it while the mixture is simmering, it has a tendency to split which is anything but pretty.
Bung everything into your pie dish and top with the pastry. Brush the pastry with the beaten egg if desired, this will help to give your pie a nice sheen.  It'll need around 30 minutes in the oven before it's ready to munch.
As you can see, the sauce continues to thicken up while your pie is cooking making it a scrummy comfort food dish whenever you need perking up.  As there's only pastry on the lid, it's not overly naughty either.

Let me know if you were tempted to give this a go. It certainly attracted some attention in the office when I was munching on the leftovers, I've been told it smelt amazing.

This recipe was taken from the Waitrose Kitchen magazine.  You can pick this up for free if you have a Waitrose Card handy.


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