Cook The Book: Chicken And Leek Pasties

Serving 4 people

90 min


  • chicken breast meat About 12 ounces boned chicken thigh and breast meat (or leftover cooked chicken), cut into thick slices
  • egg 1 egg, lightly beaten with 1 teaspoon milk, for glazing
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How to make it

  1. To make the pastry, mix the flour with the salt, then add the cubed butter and toss until the pieces are coated with flour.
  2. Stir in just enough ice water (8 to 10 tablespoons) to bring the mixture together into a fairly firm dough.
  3. Shape the dough into a rectangle with your hands and, on a well-floured surface, roll it out in one direction, away from you, so you end up with a rectangle about 3/8 inch thick.
  4. Fold the far third towards you, then fold the nearest third over that (rather like folding a business letter), so that you now have a rectangle made up of 3 equal layers.
  5. Give the pastry a quarter-turn, then repeat the rolling, folding, and turning process 5 more times. Wrap the pastry in plastic wrap and rest it in the fridge for about 30 minutes, or up to an hour.
  6. To make the filling, melt the butter in a frying pan, add the leeks and thyme, and cook gently for 5 to 10 minutes until the leeks are very tender.
  7. Stir in the cream and cook gently for 4 to 5 minutes to reduce and thicken. Stir in the mustard, season well, and let cool.
  8. If using fresh chicken, season well and fry in the oil in a frying pan over medium-high heat until evenly browned. Set aside.
  9. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  10. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured work surface to about 1/8 inch thick.
  11. Using a plate or a cake pan as a template, cut out four 8-inch circles; you may have to gather up the trimmings and reroll them to get your fourth circle.
  12. Spoon the leek mixture on to one half of each circle and pile the chicken on top.
  13. Brush the pastry edges with a little water, fold the other half of the pastry over the filling to form a half-moon shape, and crimp well to seal.
  14. Place on a lightly oiled baking sheet and brush the tops of the pasties with the egg wash.
  15. Bake for about 25 minutes, until golden brown. Eat hot or cold.