This hearty and comforting chicken and vegetable pie is made from scratch using good quality ingredients. The centrepiece to a casual meal with friends, enjoy this pie with some baked potatoes and some seasonal steamed greens.
450g plain flour
225g cold salted butter, cubed
3 to 6 tablespoons cold water
3 thick rashers streaky bacon, diced
2 chicken breasts, sliced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
250ml thickened cream
1 tablespoon cornflour
2 tablespoons water
salt and pepper, to taste
4 carrots, thinly sliced
2 zucchini, thinly sliced
1/3 onion, finely diced
1 (198g) tin sweetcorn
1/2 teaspoon hot chilli flakes
1 egg, beaten
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Shortcrust Pastry: Sift the flour into a large mixing bowl and cut in the butter. Rub the butter into the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs, working quickly to avoid warming the ingredients with the hands. Add just enough cold water to bind the pastry. Roll into a ball, wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 190 degrees C. Grease a 25cm pie dish.
Remove the pastry from the fridge and if it crumbles when you squeeze it with your hands, add just a little more cold water. Roll the pastry out on a floured surface to a thickness of 5mm.
Invert the pie dish over the pastry and cut around the edges. Allow a 1cm buffer as the pastry may shrink slightly in the oven, this will be the lid. Set aside.
Gather the remainder of the pastry and re-roll into a thickness of 5mm. Roll large enough to fit the pie dish allowing plenty of extra for overhang as the pastry will shrink during cooking. Gently line the pie dish with the pastry, pressing gently into the base and sides. Do not trim the overhang at this point.
Bake the pastry case for 10 to 15 minutes until firm and golden brown. Remove from the oven. Trim the pastry overhang.
Filling: Meanwhile, in a frying pan, melt half the butter and add the bacon and chicken. Cook and stir over a medium heat until the chicken is no longer pink in the centre. Lower the heat a little, add the parsley and half the cream and simmer gently. Mix 1 tablespoon cornflour in 2 tablespoons water in a small bowl and stir until it dissolves. Add the cornflour water to the chicken and cream and stir until the cream thickens, season. Remove from the heat and transfer to a plate. Set aside.
Using the same frying pan, melt the remaining butter and add the carrot. Cook and stir for 5 to 8 minutes on a medium heat and then add the zucchini and onion. Cook and stir for 5 minutes. Add the sweetcorn, hot chilli flakes and the remainder of the cream. Stir until the vegetable cream mixture thickens. Combine the chicken mixture and the vegetable mixture and mix well.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pie filling to the pre-baked pastry case. Cover the pie with the prepared pastry lid and press down the edges taking care not to crumble the pastry edges underneath. Brush the pie with the beaten egg.
Bake for 15 to 20 minutes until the pie is golden brown. Remove from the oven and serve immediately.
I do not find it necessary to cut vents in this pie, but feel free to do so.
With the pastry scraps you have left over, why not make them into a nice decoration like cutting them into leaf shapes, hearts or stars.