As you might remember, I posted about the wonderful thing that is pastry last week. And I promised I would post my recipe for Chicken Pie. My first memories of Chicken Pie involves my gran, Sundays and a table buckling under the weight of the amazing spread she used to prepare for us. My gran’s chicken pie was always just the way it should be. Loads of filling with crisp and light pastry with a hint of cloves and nutmeg. Comfort is personified in my gran’s chicken pie. And although I don’t always follow her recipe, mine is not too shabby! I like to add different vegetables to my Chicken Pie to keep it interesting but the basics stay the same.
I make sure I poach the chicken with loads of veg to create that delicious depth of flavour and I never EVER leave out the nutmeg or cloves. You could very easily get away with buying some Rotisserie chickens and just shredding them but poaching them yourself definitely does make a difference. And of course then you have some home-made Chicken stock for soups/risotto’s. I add almost any vegetable to this and it always tastes great. My gran used to add potatoes, peas and carrots but this week I added mushrooms & broccoli. It was delicious.
Makes 6 individual pies or one large one
To poach the chicken you will need:
2 large chickens, cleaned
4 Large Carrots, roughly chopped
2 large onions, Halved
1 head of garlic, halved
3 Bay leaves
1tbsn whole peppercorns
1 sprig Thyme
1 sprig Rosemary
For the filling:
2 cups Bechamel sauce
500g Mushrooms, sliced/halved (I used Portabellini)
300g Broccoli, steamed and roughly chopped
1/2 tsp grated Nutmeg
1/2 tsp Ground Cloves
1/2 cup Mature Cheddar, grated
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt & pepper to taste
For the Pie
2 rolls Puff Pastry, rolled out
2 eggs beaten
- Combine all the poaching ingredients in a large pot and allow to come to the boil. Turn down the heat and allow to simmer gently for 1 1/2 hours to 2 hours until the chickens are cooked.
- Remove the chickens from the stock and set aside to cool slightly.
- Strain the stock and store in the fridge or freezer for Risotto/Soup.
- Remove the skin from the chicken and shred the meat.
- Mix with all the filling ingredients.
- Spoon into pie dishes/dish of your choice. Make sure that the pastry is slightly bigger than the dish size.
- Crimp the edges of the pastry and brush with beaten egg.
- Place in the oven at 180°C for 30-45 minutes until the pastry is golden and crisp.
- Serve with extra gravy and a side salad.