Mini Chicken Leek and Thyme Pies
Makes 4 individual pies • Prep 1 hour • Cooking 20 mins
What you’ll need
800-900 g chicken breast
750 ml chicken stock
125 ml white wine
5 cloves garlic
6 sprigs thyme
2 leeks, finely sliced
4 spring onions, roughly chopped
30 g The Healthy Baker Plain Flour
125 g creme fraiche
for cooking olive oil
for brushing milk
For the pastry
225 g The Healthy Baker Plain Flour (plus extra for dusting)
175 g butter
1 pinch salt
100 ml chilled water
Begin by measuring out the butter for the pastry and either leaving it in its wrappings or covering it in foil, place in the freezer for about 40 minutes.
Pre-heat oven to 180 degrees Celsius.
In a medium baking dish, add the two chicken breasts and cover with 375ml of the chicken stock and the white wine. Add in 4 of the garlic cloves whole and unpeeled and 4 of the thyme sprigs. Cover tightly with foil and cook for about 40 minutes, or until the chicken has cooked through.
While the chicken is cooking you can begin to prepare the pastry. In a large bowl add the plain flour and a pinch of salt and briefly whisk together to combine. Have the chilled water ready to go.
When the butter has finished chilling in the freezer, use a grater to grate the butter into the flour - ensure you hold the butter using its wrappings so the heat of your hands doesn’t warm the butter too much.
Once all the butter has been grated, use a spatula to mix it into the flour. Then begin to add some of the chilled water, a little at a time, until the mixture forms a dough. Continue mixing with the spatula, then use your hands to bring the dough together.
Cover in plastic wrap and chill in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Once the chicken has cooked, remove from the oven and remove the chicken from the poaching liquid (the liquid can be discarded now), and allow to cool a little. Once cooled a little, shred the chicken using a fork and set aside.
In a large fry pan, heat about a tablespoon of olive oil and finely chop the last garlic clove. Add the garlic, leeks, spring onions and remaining thyme and cook on low-medium heat for a few minutes until the leek has softened.
Add the flour to the leek mixture and mix well. Add the remaining chicken stock and mix to combine. Allow the stock to simmer for a couple of minutes, until the mixture has thickened a little and is smooth.
Add the crème fraîche and mix well, then add the chicken and stir to combine. Remove from the heat and allow to cool a little.
Arrange four individual pie dishes (min. 250ml capacity each) on a lined baking tray, and increase oven temperature to 200 degrees Celsius.
Discard the thyme sprigs from the chicken filling, then divide the chicken filling between the four pie dishes.
Generously sprinkle a work surface with plain flour and roll out the chilled pastry until it is fairly thin. Cut out four large circles that will fit over your pie dishes, brush the edges of the dishes with some of the milk, and place the pastry lids on top. Trim any excess if necessary, and press the edges down with a fork to seal.
Lightly brush the pastry lids with some of the milk.
Using a chicken shaped biscuit cutter cut out four chickens from the remaining pastry, and place one of top of each pie lid. Brush each chicken with a little more milk, and using a sharp knife, poke a hole in each pastry lid so steam can escape whilst cooking.
Cook for 15-20 minutes, or until the pie lids are crispy and golden.
Makes four individual pies.