After my sister told me I was an accident, my mum followed that up by saying “a happy accident”. Much like that, the Chicken & Leek came out an abundance of leeks, and a lack of olive oil.
Chicken & Leek (Curried Chicken, Leek & Manchetout)
- 1 kg Chicken thighs (deboned, skin off – bones are for stock, skin can be placed in a hot oven for delicious chicken crackling)
- 3 leeks – diced.
- 3 cloves of garlic – minced
- 1cm knob of ginger – minced or grated
- 1 large red chilli (fresh cayenne) – deseeded & finely diced
- 2 Tbsp. Coconut oil
- 1 Tbsp. Garam Malasa
- 1 Tbsp. Tandoori Masala or curry powder
- 1 tsp. Chilli powder
- 1 Tbsp. Cumin
- 1 Tbsp. Paprika
- 1 Tbsp. Turmeric
- 400g Manche tout (snow peas) – washed and chopped in half
- 100ml single cream, sour cream or yoghurt (depend on how healthy you feel(
- 400ml Chicken stock
- 1 sachet gelatin
- 150ml coconut milk
- 1 Tbsp. Light soy sauce
- 1 Tbsp. Fish sauce
- 1 Tbsp Sugar (white or brown)
Chicken breast is fine, chicken thighs taste better.
I keep my ginger in the freezer and it keeps indefinitely. I use a fine microplane to grate it and never bother peeling.
- Add coconut oil to a large high sided pot or Dutch oven. Low heat. Let it melt.
- Wash the leeks by cutting two slits down the lengthy and washing toward the tips, dice.
- Add leeks, turn up heat to medium, start stirring and sweating until they soften – 10min or so.
- Add garlic, ginger & chilli cook until aromatic, stir lots, no one likes burnt garlic – 2min
- Add spices, 1 Tbsp. of Flour, stir until all spices are mixed in. They’ll clump and start to stick to the bottom after a minute or so.
- Add a couple splashes of water to loosen into more of a paste, scrape off any bits that are stuck.
- If you’re using homemade stock, good for you, if not its still fine. Either way I’d still add a sachet of gelatin to the stock and disolve. It’ll add a fiendishly sticky quality that will coat your mouth in deliciousness.
- LIQUIDS: Once the water has evaporated, add stock, 100ml all a time. Think of this like making a bechamel sauce, if you add it all at once you’ll get lumps. Add the first bit then incorporate, then the next then the next and so on.
- Add you chicken, it will poach gently in the liquid.
- FLAVOUR BOMB: add soy, fish sauce, sugar, stir
- MORE LIQUIDS: Add coconut milk, creaming cornstarch slurry – bring to a simmer – cover and let it quietly bubble for 20 minutes. Check periodically to stir.
- Taste. Season. You’ll still want to add salt and pepper. Go on.
- CRUNCH: When sauce has thickened to coat the back of a spoon, add Manche Tout, stir in and turn off heat and let cool before filling pies.
Preheat your oven to 180c
Pastry. Remember that flaky/rough puff and a bunch of butter in it. The longer you have it out and the more you touch it, the more it’ll melt.
Work quickly, don’t dick around, use enough flour when rolling out so it doesn’t stick.
Crack an egg in a bowl and whisk it up
- Roll out your pastry (if you haven’t got pre rolled sheets)
- Flip your greased pie dishes (or dish) upside and trace a couple of millimeters around from the dish with a knife. Lids first. Always.
- I like to go 100% flaky/rough puff for my pies. Mainly because I don’t want to make two different types of pastry. And I’m greedy. If you do the lids first, you can re roll the excess into another sheet (just make sure you layer then in the same direction) and use that for the bases.
- Roll out and cut out bases, use the dishes (or dish) as a guide, go about 30-40mm out from the dish so you have room to let it sag.
- Fill. It’s not time to be stingy. make it level with the edge of the dishes (or dish)
- Brush the edges with egg and get that lid on.
- Trim around the edges. Depending on how much you have left over, you could re-use it!
- Seal them edges. Use you thumb, or a fork, or the back of a spoon.
- REST. Give them 30min – 1hr in the fridge to help the pastry cool down.
- Glaze. Use a brush (mines a small painters brush from poundland) and eggwash the top.
- Score the top or Sprinkle any toppings over, Sometimes cheese, sometimes dried herbs, sometimes cracked pepper.
- BAKE. 180c. 25 – 30 minutes-ish. Until golden on top. If you put your ear up to it you can hear it bubbling away.
- Wait for a bit, they’re actually thermonuclear