Chicken & Leek Filo Pie with White Wine Gravy

chickenfilopie

Okay, so I got these recipes from Delicious Magazine but they don’t seem to have them on their website yet. Mr. Darcy raved so much about this dish however, that I will type them up anyway. I have to say, I modified them ever so slightly for my preferences so I’ll only write up what I did.

Now, this is a very slow-going and admittedly dedicated recipe…well, I should say 2 recipes. Hee hee. What can I say? Some days – like these cold, rainy horrid English days – it’s lovely to burrow into the kitchen for hours, sipping tea and pottering about with herbs and creamy sauces. So don’t bother whipping this recipe out for a quick dinner, rather devote your hard work to either a very appreciative and discerning partner, or a dinner party with friends. I don’t know how to host a dinner party, so it was all Mr. Darcy.

Roast Chicken & White Wine Gravy

  • 1 medium chicken (mine was about 1.5kg)
  • 2 large onions, roughly chopped
  • 1 garlic bulb, cloves separated and unpeeled
  • 1/2 lemon
  • Large handful fresh thyme leaves
  • 3 carrots, roughly chopped
  • 3 celery sticks, roughly chopped
  • 300ml white wine
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Chicken stock, to top up gravy
  1. Preheat oven to 180°C 160°C fan oven
  2. Place an oven-proof roasting dish on the hob
  3. Stuff the chicken with the lemon, thyme, half the garlic and onions
  4. Drop a knob of butter and a drizzle of olive oil in the dish
  5. Seal the bird’s flavour by browning all sides of the skin over a medium heat in the roasting dish
  6. Scatter the remaining onion, garlic, and chopped veg around the chicken
  7. Pour in the white wine and an equal amount of water, scatter over the thyme
  8. Take a small knob of butter and stab into the top of the bird with the rosemary sprigs (this is a favourite method of mine 🙂
  9. Cover the whole dish loosely with foil and cook for 45 mins
  10. Remove, uncover and cook for a further 30 mins, or until the juices of the breast run clear
  11. Take out of the oven and let cool for about 5-8 mins (I’d switch the oven off even if you’re going straight into the filo pie recipe, mustn’t waste energy)
  12. Remove the chicken’s skin from the neck back to the rear opening, and carve into pieces (this will let the juices flow back into the dish and not onto your cutting board)
  13. Place the bits on a board and begin shredding off the usable flesh for the pie
  14. Either discard or save the carcass (for stock)

Gravy

  1. Mash up the veg in the dish with a potato masher
  2. Strain with the juice into a large jug, discarding the veg bits (there’s no more flavour in them)
  3. Top up this liquid with about 450ml of hot chicken stock, sieving off any fatty residue that resettles at the top (this just looks like a layer of oil)

Okay, so that’s the hardest part over! By now your kitchen smells amazing (Mr. Darcy could smell it coming up the elevator shaft in our building) so time to turn that aromatic chicken and gravy into something really special…

Chicken and Leek Filo Pie

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, sliced
  • shredded chicken from 1 whole bird
  • 300ml white wine gravy
  • 2 tbsp plain flour
  • 2 tbsp fresh thyme leaves
  • 150ml double cream
  • 6 sheets filo pastry, cut into 1.5in strips
  • 50g butter, melted
  1. Preheat the oven to 200°C 180°C fan
  2. Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan, softening up the onion and leek
  3. Pour in the gravy and shredded chicken – keep to a low heat (just enough to create steam)
  4. Sprinkle the flour lightly and mix well
  5. Add the thyme and cream – bringing to a boil
  6. Turn down to simmer for 5 mins, adding a little water if the mixture starts turning to thick
  7. Pour the contents into a round, deep oven-proof casserole
  8. Carefully take each strip of filo and pass veeery delicately into the bowl of melted butter
  9. Scrunch ever so slightly and carefully place on top of the pie filling (don’t use too much butter or else the pastry will sink)
  10. Place into the oven for about 15-20 mins, or once the pastry is dark gold and the filling is bubbling around the edges
  11. Let the pie stop bubbling once removed, and then serve with some steamed seasonal veg

Now, wasn’t that worth it? It may seem bizarre that I go to such lengths for food that I don’t actually eat, but psychologically I get ‘full up’ on both the smells and the sight of people moaning with pleasure over each mouthful of my food. All the reward with none of the calories, and a genuine sense of satisfaction that only comes with slow cooking.

chickenfilopie2

Update:

Here’s the one I made my family in Florida this past December. It’s an all round success 🙂

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