Chicken, leek & ham pie with tarragon crust recipe

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  • Yield: 4 Servings
  • Preparation Time: 30 Minutes
  • Cooking Time: 50 Minutes


For the Pastry Dough
  • 2 recipe quantities Rough Puff Pastry, prepared to the first chilling
  • A little flour, for dusting
  • ¼ cup chopped tarragon leaves
  • 1 egg
For the Chicken, Leek & Ham Filling
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 6 skinless boneless chicken thighs, cut into ¾-inch pieces
  • ¼ cup unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 2 leeks, trimmed and thinly sliced
  • Scant ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • Scant 2 cups Chicken Broth
  • ⅔ cup heavy cream
  • 6 ounces cooked ham hock, shredded
  • 1 tablespoon chopped tarragon leaves
  • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Boiled and buttered new potatoes and seasonal vegetables, to serve
How to Make It
  1. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface, sprinkle with ½ tablespoon of the tarragon and roll it in before folding. Repeat on the following turns until all the tarragon is added to the pastry. Chill as directed.
  2. While the pastry is chilling, heat the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the chicken and cook 2 to 3 minutes on each side until just cooked. Remove from the skillet and set aside. Wipe the skillet clean, then return it to medium heat. Add the butter, then the garlic and leeks and fry 2 to 4 minutes until softened.
  3. Sprinkle over the flour, then gradually begin to add the broth, whisking continuously so it doesn’t form lumps, until you have added all the broth and the liquid has thickened slightly. It should take 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the cream, then the chicken, ham and tarragon. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove from the heat and leave to cool slightly.
  4. Heat the oven to 400°F and grease a 9½-inch pie dish with butter. Roll out the pastry to twice the size of the pie dish, then use half to line the base, trimming the edges so the pastry just sits on the rim of the dish. Spoon in the filling. Brush the edge of the pastry with a little water, then put the remaining pastry on top. Trim the edges and crimp the top and bottom together to seal the pie by pressing with the tines of a fork.
  5. Cut a small hole in the top of the pastry to allow the steam escape. Beat the egg with 1 tablespoon water to make an egg wash, then brush it over the top of the pie. Bake 30 to 40 minutes until the pastry is a lovely golden brown. Serve with buttered new potatoes and seasonal vegetables.

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