To make this recipe you’ll need a 20cm/8in springform cake tin, rice or baking beans and optional cookie cutters.
Preparation time: less than 30 mins
Cooking time: over 2 hours
For the pie case
- 1 tbsp butter
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- 2 sheets ready rolled puff pastry (320g/11½oz each)
- 1 free-range egg, beaten
For the filling
- 6 chicken thighs, skinless and boneless
- 1 tbsp plain flour
- 1 tbsp vegetable oil
- 2 onions, quartered and sliced
- 1 leek, cut in half lengthways and sliced
- 250g/9oz chestnut mushrooms, cut into quarters
- 75g/2½oz unsalted butter
- 75g/2½oz plain flour
- 220g/8oz cheddar, grated
- 225ml/8fl oz chicken stock
- 250ml/9oz single cream
- 2 tsp salt
- 1 tsp black pepper
Preheat the oven to 190C/170C Fan/Gas 5. Grease the cake tin with the butter and then dust it with the flour, shaking out any excess.
To make the pie case, slice one sheet of pastry in half lengthways and use it to line the sides of the cake tin – it should overlap the base of the tin and have a slight overhang on the top, too.
Cut a circle out of the second sheet of pastry that’s slightly bigger than the tin and set aside – this will be for the top of the pie.
Use the remaining pastry to make the base. This will be smaller than the top, given that the sides are already overlapping the base. Press the base into the tin and set aside all the leftover pastry for later.
Prick the base with a fork and then line with a sheet of greaseproof paper. Fill all the way to the top with the baking beans or rice. Bake for 30 minutes.
Remove the baking beans and paper and brush the inside of the case with the beaten egg (saving what’s left of the egg for later) before returning to the oven for a further 10 minutes. This will stop the filling coming out later. Once baked, set aside to cool.
To make the filling, toss the chicken thighs in the flour. Add the oil to a large frying pan and set it over a high heat. Fry the chicken, working in batches if you need, until the thighs are golden-brown on all sides, then remove from the pan and set aside.
Add the sliced onion, leek and mushrooms to the pan and continue to cook over a high heat, stirring regularly, for 5–7 minutes, until softened. Remove them from the pan and set aside with the chicken.
Lower the heat slightly and melt the butter in the pan. Once melted, stir in the flour. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring continuously, then add the grated cheese and pour in the chicken stock slowly while stirring to prevent lumps from forming. Reduce the heat and stir until everything has melted, before adding the cream.
Quarter the cooked chicken thighs and add them back to the creamy mixture along with the cooked onion and leek. Bring to the boil, then turn off the heat.
Spoon the filling into the cooled pastry case. Brush the lip of pastry with the beaten egg and then place the pastry lid on top. Press down well to seal.
Brush more beaten egg over the top of the pie and use the reserved pastry offcuts to decorate. Use whatever shapes you like – we used hearts and stars. Add the cut outs to the top of the pie and egg wash over the top.
Make a small hole in the top of the pie to allow the steam to escape and put in the oven to cook for 1 hour, or until the pastry is crisp and has turned a dark golden-brown.
To neaten up the edges, use a peeler or a fine grater to scrape away the excess pastry around the top lip.
Release the pie from the tin. You can serve it hot from the oven or leave it to cool completely before chilling in the fridge. Once cold, the pie will cut into neat slices.
This is a versatile pie that can be made up from all sorts of different fillings. To make it veggie, substitute the chicken for more vegetables and the stock for vegetable stock.
This can be fully cooked and cooled in advance. If you want to serve it hot just reheat in the tin for 45 minutes at 190C/170C Fan/Gas 5.
The Coronation Dish
In celebration of the Coronation of King Charles III and Queen Camilla, The One Show teamed up with Dame Mary Berry and The Coronation Big Lunch to find a dish that is perfect for street parties and celebrations across the country.
This entry from Adam Handling was the overall winner, as revealed on The One Show on Tuesday 2nd May 2023!