I decided to go savoury this week. I spent a bunch of time trying to figure out which savoury filling I wanted and eventually settled on a chicken pie.
I couldn't find a recipe that matched what I had in my head so I cobbled together some bits and pieces from a number of sources. The pastry recipe is adapted with my own notes from Stephanie Alexander's "the cook's companion."
Crust pastry (rough puff)
Crust pastry (rough puff)
- 180g unsalted butter (remove from fridge 30 minutes before using)
- 240g plain flour
- pinch of salt
- 1/4 cup water
- 400g chicken mince
- brown onion
- carrots, zucchini, whatever else you'd like but not too much
- 1 1/2 cup chicken stock
- plain flour
- 23cm pie dish
- Buy some puff pastry. You need one sheet.
- 1 egg, separated
- Sift flour onto bench. Chop butter into little pieces over flour. Mix around lightly.
- Make a well in the center for the water. Mix water with the flour with a pastry scraper until combined but still rough and lumpy.
- Smear the dough away from you across the bench with the palm of your hand. You want chunks of butter spread out in the dough so don't mix too well.
- Gather it back together into a ball, flatten into a disk and cover with plastic.
- Refrigerate for 30 minutes or more.
- Preheat oven to 200ºC
- When it's time to use the dough, roll it out with flour sprinkled over it (generously if necessary) until it's a roundish shape bigger than your pie dish. You're aiming for about 4mm thickness. Place in pie dish, gently press into corners and trim off excess. The pastry will shrink a little during baking.
- Prick the base of the pie shell, cover with baking paper and weigh down with baking weights (or rice or whatever you have.)
- Bake for 15 minutes. Remove the weights and bake an additional 15 minutes.
- Brown the onion, add the mince and brown, add the vegetables and stock and simmer for a while - 15 minutes should be plenty. Season with salt and pepper. Tinker with spices and herbs. Experiment :-)
- Sprinkle some flour over the top of the mixture and stir through. Keep doing this until the liquid turns into a thick gravy.
- Paint the pie base with the egg white (leaving some) and pour in the filling. Fill up to below the side of the case - you don't want it at the top or it'll make a horrible bubbly leaky mess. The leftover goes nicely in toasties.
- Paint the edge of the case with more egg white. Place the puff pastry over the top. Press down to seal and trim off the excess.
- Paint the top of the pie with the egg yolk.
- Pierce the middle of the pie top with a knife to allow steam to escape.
- If you have some of the case pastry left over you can use it to make decorations for the pie top.
- Bake for 20 minutes.