This time of year is right up my street, I have to be honest. The nights are pulling in and it definitely makes me want to stay home and experiment with new dishes, or cook some comforting classics. Which is what I did tonight, but with a twist. We were in Spain last week (blog post to come on that) and although it was lovely to be in the sun, I was so excited to get home to our lovely cottage. There’s nothing quite like home comforts is there? And one of those comforts is food. While we were away, I really fancied having a homemade pie and chips. It’s one of my favourite comfort dishes and the thought of eating it made my mouth water.My favourite pie of all time is steak and kidney, but it’s not quite that weather yet! I’ve linked my recipe for the steak and kidney pie if you’re interested! However, I knew I could devour a chicken pie, and they’re simple to do as you don’t need to slow cook it or braise the meat. I did encounter a first world problem at the shop though, the chillers were all down and I couldn’t get any smoked lardons or bacon of any kind so I thought I would do a twist on the traditional chicken and bacon pie and use chorizo instead. I love chorizo and we eat it in abundance, but with some meals, you have to be very careful that you don’t over power anything else. I made a cheese, mustard and tarragon sauce to go with mine and I have to say, it tasted bloody delicious!The recipe serves 6 so it’s great to share or freeze some of the meat to have another time!Prep time: 10 minutes.Cooking time: 1 hour 20 minutes.Ingredients:For the filling –
- 4 large chicken breasts diced.
- 200g chorizo finely diced.
- 2 leeks sliced.
- 1 brown onion diced.
- 4 cloves of garlic crushed.
- 100g frozen sweetcorn.
- Black pepper.
- 2 tsp dried tarragon.
- 1 tsp dried mixed herbs.
- Ready rolled puff pastry – you can make your own, but it’s a lot easier and cheaper to just buy it!
For the sauce –
- 40g plain flour.
- 500ml vegetable stock (I use stock instead of milk as it keeps better and gives the sauce a smoother texture)
- 100g butter.
- 250g grated mature cheddar.
- 2 tsp dijon mustard.
- 2 tsp dried tarragon.
- Black pepper.
- Melt the butter in a large pan and add the garlic, leeks and onion. Have the pan over a medium heat and cook until they soften. This will take around 15 minutes.
- Add the chorizo and season with black pepper. You won’t need to add salt as the chorizo is naturally salty, as well as the cheese sauce. Also add the tarragon and mixed herbs. Stir thoroughly and cook for 20 minutes on a medium heat.
- Next, add the sweetcorn and the chicken. You want the chicken to be just cooked when you assemble the pie, if not it is in danger of becoming dry. Cook for 20 minutes on a low heat then remove the pan from the heat and allow to cool. You need the meat to be cool when you put the pastry on top, otherwise it will become soggy and moisture won’t be able to escape.
- While the meat is cooling down, start making the sauce. Melt the butter together with the flour and whisk to make a roux.
- Slowly begin to add the stock. Whisk it in gently and the sauce will begin to thicken. You don’t want your sauce to be runny at all. It needs to be the consistency of thick custard.
- When the sauce is at the right consistency, add the cheese and whisk until it has all melted. Don’t let your sauce boil at any point as the cheese may stick to the bottom and burn.
- Add the dijon, tarragon and black pepper. When all of the ingredients are incorporated, remove from the heat.
- Stir the sauce into the meat mixture and set aside to cool.
- When it comes to cooking the pie, you need to pre-heat the oven to 180 degrees and then cover your meat with the ready rolled pastry. Brush with an egg wash.
- Cook the pie for twenty minutes and serve with homemade chips (literally cut potatoes, hard boil, then cook in the oven for 45 minutes, or until they’re crispy), and peas.