International Pies

Chicken Pie

Chicken Pie, Linu Freddy,
Written by Linu Freddy

And winter is round the corner and all I can think of are pies, casseroles, pies, Christmas puddings and plum cakes!
Now, I have to admit, pastries have always been my nemesis. I somehow tend to do everything wrong when it comes to pastry. But yesterday turned out to be my lucky day. I have been reading up and watching anything related to pastries for some time now after my last tryst with filo fell flat on my face. Though I had tried a whole lot of recipes from the net, nothing seemed to work. So yesterday, I turned to my trusted book for long, The Complete Book of Baking. I bought this book at a sale when I was just starting out with baking and it has been my “go to” book for all queries related to baking. I like it even better than Cake Bible which I find too exhausting to read at times.
Now after reading up on my pastry basics once more, I turned to the shortcrust pastry recipe. And the points to keep in mind was to work with only your fingertips ( as they are the coolest part of the hand), use ice cold water ( now this was a revelation!) and not forget that the amount of water is just a guideline. Armed with all these points, I started off with a prayer and surprise, I got the perfect shortcrust pastry dough! So without much ado, here is the recipe, for the shortcrust and for the filling.
Ingredients for Shortcrust Pastry
280gm plain flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
125gram cold butter
125ml iced water
1 teaspoon lemon juice
How To
1. Sift flour and salt together.
2. Cut butter into small pieces and rub into flour with fingertips until mixture resembles breadcrumbs.
3. Mix water and lemon juice into dry ingredients to make a stiff dough. Knead well.
4. Cover with cling film and refrigerate for 1 hour. Roll out dough on floured surface to a thickness of one eight of an inch. Line the flan case, prick the base and trim the edges.
5. Blind bake (line with greaseproof paper and sprinkle with dried beans or rice) in a preheated oven at 200 degree Celsius for 10 minutes. Remove the beans, spoon the filling and cover with thinly rolled shortcrust pastry. Trim the edges and brush the top with beaten egg and bake for 20 minutes until golden.
Ingredients for the filling
300gm boneless chicken pieces (small)
1 onion (chopped)
2 carrots (diced)
150gm peas
150gm corn kernels
salt to taste
parsley, thyme and pepper for seasoning
1 bayleaf
2 tablespoon olive oil
2 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoon all purpose flour
3-4 tablespoon fresh cream
How To Make Chicken Pie
Heat olive oil in a pan. Add onion and saute until translucent. Add carrots and fry for a couple of minutes. Add the chicken pieces and saute for3-4 minutes on medium flame. Season with salt, pepper, parsley, thyme and bay leaf ( I just eyeball these, no specific measurements as such) and fry for a couple of minutes. Add half a cup of water or chicken stock and allow it to boil. Once the water is reduced ad peas and the corn kernels and let it simmer.
Meanwhile, heat the butter in another pan until melted. Add the flour and stir continuously until its incorporated well without any lumps. Lastly add the cream and mix well and add this to the chicken. Remove from heat as soon as the sauce thickens. Allow this filling to cool.

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Linu Freddy

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