Chicken and leek pie

Leeks are still plentiful and affordable at the moment. This chicken and leek pie will please the family as it is comforting and hugely satisfying to have a homemade pie.

I have saved us all a little time by using store-bought puff pastry. You can make individual pies if you have suitable dishes or you can make a family-sized pie to keep things simple.

Makes 6 small or 1 large


4 chicken breasts, boneless

1 chicken stock cube

500ml water

1 bay leaf

2 sprigs fresh thyme

4 black peppercorns

For the sauce

60g butter

2 Tbsp olive oil

2 leeks, washed, cut into 1cm rounds

60g flour

250ml milk

500ml stock (from poaching chicken)

Pinch cayenne

Pinch freshly grated nutmeg

Salt and pepper

1 Tbsp wholegrain mustard

250g flaky puff pastry,

A little flour for dusting

1 egg, for glazing


Preheat the oven to 180degC.

Begin by poaching the chicken; this will give you a good base to make the sauce for the pie.

In a medium-sized saucepan, add the ends of the leeks, water, stock cube, bay leaf, thyme, and peppercorns. Bring to a gentle simmer, add the chicken breasts, and poach gently for 10-15 minutes. Remove the chicken breasts and set aside.

Strain the stock and return to the pot, add the leeks and cook for 5 minutes or until just tender.

In a clean saucepan, add the butter and oil.

Add the flour and stir well to combine. Cook out the flour for a few minutes to reach a sandy colour (this will help the flavour and colour of the sauce).

Gradually add the hot stock stirring constantly to prevent lumps.

Add the milk and stir well to combine. Continue cooking over a low temperature for another 10 minutes.

Dice the cooked chicken and add to the sauce.

Add the leeks, adjust the seasoning and pour into your moulds.

Roll the pastry out to fit your pie dish. If making individual ones, cut around the top allowing a couple millimetres extra.

Brush the egg around the rim of the dish/es and place the pastry over the pie. Press the edge of the pastry on to the rim of the dish to secure the pastry. It is nice to decorate the pie with any leftover pieces or pastry. You can make leaves, or a little chickens, et cetera. I also like to crimp the edges or use a fork to tidy them up.

Brush the top with the egg.

Piece a hole in the centre with a tip of a knife and bake for 25-30 minutes or until the pastry is golden and crisp and the filling is hot.

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