Somerset Chicken and Cider PieServes:
This is a relatively quick to assemble pie filling – you can make it as one large family pie or Jalousie, or make individual pies, pot pies or a cobbler.
- 2 tbsp oil
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts sliced or chopped into small pieces
- 1 leek sliced longwise then finely chopped
- 1 medium apple, peeled, quartered and sliced
- 1 carrot peeled, sliced longwise and cut in thin semi-circular slices
- 300 ml apple cider
- 2 tbsp plain flour
- 1 tbsp wholegrain mustard
- 1 tsp chicken stock powder
- ½ tsp dried thyme or a few sprigs of fresh thyme
- a pinch of mixed herbs
- salt and pepper to taste
- 1 400g block of puff pastry defrosted or 3 sheets of puff pastry cut and joined to make 2 larger sheets
Pre heat the oven to 210°C. Heat 1 tbsp oil in a large frying pan and add the chicken in batches, stirring until sealed and setting each batch aside once it is sealed. Then add the remaining oil to the pan, and when heated add the leek, sliced apple and carrot, and cook gently until the leek is softened.
Return the chicken and any juices to the pan then stir in the flour, mixing well. Add the cider a bit at a time, mixing it in with a wooden spoon so the flour doesn’t form lumps. When all the cider is added, sprinkle in chicken stock and herbs and stir in the mustard. Simmer gently until the liquid is almost gone, season with salt and pepper and allow to cool.
Grease and line pie dish with pastry, fill with cooled filling. Brush the pastry edge with water then place the pastry lid on top. Use a sharp knife to neatly trim the edges then pinch, crimp or use a fork to press all the way around the edge fusing the pastry together. Use any pastry trimmings to cut decorations, a dab of water will make them stick. Brush the pie or pies with beaten egg or a little milk before baking 35-45 minutes – until golden, and crisp.
This filling can also be used for pasties, hand pies or turnovers.