Sunday, 3 March 2013

Eat: Chicken, Mushroom and Pancetta Pie

Now, lets be honest. This baby isn't going to win any awards for its looks but it was utterly delicious and perfect for a Sunday afternoon where I was feeling a little 'fragile'. Plus, it was the inaugural pie in my new {to me} enamel pie dish. I had had my eye on these for a while {after watching a few too many Jamie's 15 minute meals} but I was reluctant to spend basically any money on them. This one was a stonking 99p in a charity shop that I happened to pop in to and it's the perfect size for a generous pie for two. Clearly the charity shop gods were smiling on me that day!

On to this bad boy. It was originally a Jamie Oliver recipe but aside from the ingredients, I really just played around with the whole thing. Keep in mind these quantities made a large-ish pie for two people


chicken thighs {you could use breast if you'd prefer}
6 spring onions, finely chopped
8 closed cup mushrooms, roughly chopped
400ml chicken stock
2 tbsp single cream
1 pack of pancetta {or finely chopped bacon}
1 bay leaf
1 sheet pre-rolled puff pastry
Egg/milk for brushing

I had roasted my chicken the day before for dinner. If you aren't using leftovers, roast your meat before you start cooking. In a large pan over a medium heat, fry your mushrooms and spring onions with a little bit of oil. Add in your pancetta too. Tear or chop your chicken into pieces that are roughly the same size and add these. This was probably the most time consuming aspect as the meat I was using was still on the bone and a bit fiddly. 

Turn down the heat slightly and add your stock, cream and seasoning, including the bay leaf. Go easy on the salt as the pancetta will already bring a bit of salt to the whole she-bang. Mix some of the stock with a tablespoon or so of cornflour and stir this through the liquid to help thicken it up.

Cut your puff pastry in half and use one to line the bottom of your pie dish. This is controversial and Mary Berry would have a heart attack, but I couldn't really be fussed with blind baking the base and I'm partial to a bit of 'soggy bottom' in my pie though if it's not your thing, simply skip this step entirely. Or bake it beforehand with some rice to stop it 'puffing' up.

Transfer the meat and vegetables into the pie dish with a slotted spoon. You want to pack in as much as possible, lets be honest. Continue to let the sauce simmer away for a few more minutes to thicken up a bit then transfer that over too, being careful not to spill over.
Put your pastry lid on top and tuck it in nice and snug, folding over any edges and pressing them down with a fork. I meant to use my pastry bird to get my pastry top nice and crispy but totally forgot. Score the top of your pastry with a knife then, using a pastry brush, cover the top with milk or beaten egg to help it go that nice golden brown colour. I cooked mine in the middle/top of the oven at gas mark 6 for about 20 minutes, turning it once so it didn't burn in the hot spots of my oven.

We enjoyed ours with mashed potato {heavy on the cream and butter. Oops!} but some green veg wouldn't have gone un-appreciated! The perfect addition to a Sunday afternoon curled up.

Love B x

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