Sunday, March 25, 2012

Maggie Beer inspired Chicken pot pie

For me,a pot pie is the ultimate comfort food.What's so comforting about a humble little pie?Is it the flaky,buttery pastry or the rich,creamy filling or the wonderfully melt-in-your-mouth combination of the two?Or could it be all that butter??The big slab of butter that you throw into a pie?

Yes,of course a pie has butter...a good lot of butter.A friend had once asked me if she could make a pie without butter and without refined flour.I suggested that she better not make a pie at all and have porridge instead.Because a pie is a pie is a pie!It is awfully unhealthy and totally tasty.It is an absolute no-no for size zero aspirants,fitness freaks and other poor souls on diet.But there is nothing like a warm pot pie for a tired,exhausted momma like me who does not mind a few extra pounds being added to her already jiggling belly!
This pie recipe is however not my favourite though it is a really,really good one.My favourite pie is my Amma's pot pie which I grew up eating.I guess you'll have to wait for a while for that recipe.But for now,here is one inspired by Maggie Beer's pheasant pie which was featured on one of the episodes of Masterchef Australia.I've adapted her extremely forgiving sour cream pastry recipe which is too good for words.And I've used chicken and mushrooms in a rich, creamy sauce for the filling.How comforting is that?


For the sour cream pastry(adapted from Maggie Beer's pheasant pie recipe)

200g Unsalted butter, chilled
250g Plain flour
125ml Sour Cream

Pulse the butter and flour in a food processor until it looks like breadcrumbs.
Add the sour cream and continue to pulse until the dough starts to incorporate into a ball.
Wrap in plastic film and refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Roll the pastry to desired thickness and cut 2 circles, 1 bigger for the base of your pie dish and 1 smaller for the lid.
Keep refrigerated while you make the filling.

For the filling

3 boneless chicken breasts(cut into small cubes)
1 packet button mushrooms(halved)
1 onion (cut into fairly big cubes)
1/4 cup plain flour
1-2 cups chicken stock
1/2 cup fresh cream
Good sprinkle of parsley
salt and pepper to taste
olive oil

Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
Rub chicken pieces with salt,pepper and olive oil.Spread on a baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes or until almost cooked.
Heat olive oil in a pan and saute onions until just translucent.
Add mushrooms and saute till mushrooms reduce to half the size and all the water evaporates.
Add flour and cook for a while.(It should not turn brown)
Add stock and stir to remove lumps.
Add cooked chicken cubes and fresh cream and cook till thick.The sauce should be creamy but not clumpy.Add more stock if needed.
Season with parsley,salt and pepper.
Keep aside till it cools.
Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
Carefully transfer the bigger circle of the pastry to the base of the pie dish and gently press down and the sides,making sure there is a little extra pastry around the sides.
Spoon the filling into the base.
Cover with the smaller circle of the pastry and crimp the edges to seal.
Score a cross pattern on top of the pie.
Give the top an egg wash.
Bake at 180 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour,till the crust is nice and brown.


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