Often I end up with rests of meat from a previous meal and too often I don’t know how to reuse the rests and create a new dish with them. I don’t like left over meals, in fact I always avoid eating them. Call me spoiled or a brat, I am just not the type of person who enjoys them. In my experience I am not the only one who feels the same way. In nowadays world we like to enjoy a different meal each single day and most probably some of our ancestors felt the same way. Imagine a huge family get together, such as the American Thanksgiving nowadays or even Christmas, and so many dishes and a load of delicious left over meats that are too precious to be wasted. In my recent case it was some good quality chicken that my mother had made one fine Sunday in May, when I was in Austria. The next day my mother came up with a Chicken Mushroom Pie, better known as a Tourte in french.
I imagine this is a dish that used to be commonly served at the time when kings and queens ruled Europe. Medieval and Renaissance menus from important celebrations, still proof and show us today, that tourtes and co were the aristocracies favorites. Just the other day I was reading Sabine Weigand’s – The Countess – in German when I came across a typically detailed menu of its time. The Court described, was apparently situated in nowadays Germany. Pies and the such were popular all over central Europe and not only France at that time. I am not going to list up each Item from the book, since that part is written in older dialect German and many words are unknown to me and the list includes 3o dishes. What I can tell you, is that such a royal menu was always contained a variety of meats, in fact they ate only meat. Wild game, beef, sheep, fish, poultry, pork, you name it!
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Coming back to the Easy chicken Pie recipe… I had posted here previously over the last months a few other short crust pastries. At the end they are all the same just that some have more quantity and some less. The rule in making a good short crust pastry, is simply use 1:2 amounts of soft Butter and Flour. With that in mind you can make any amount of short crust pastry. You might even want to consider pre making a couple of batches and freezing each dough ball to use it another time. (When you do that keep in mind to defrost it in the fridge over night). I do that often because the short crust pastry comes super handy when you want to make something from scratch and you end up with little time at hand.
In this recipe I used chicken that had been baked previously in a buttery sauce, so it was more on the plain side, flavor-wise. If you have some spiced chicken around and you want to use it in this recipe, then just omit adding the herbs in the recipe underneath. Of course that’s on your own risk, but if you ask me in advance then I can guide you and tell you what to do and what not. I am online the whole day (Indian time) so usually I am quick in answering requests and questions!
- 300 gram White Flour
- 150 gram soft Butter
- pinch Salt
- 1 Tbs luke warm Water
- 50 gram Butter
- 2 Tablespoon Flour
- 125 milliliter Milk
- pinch Salt
- pinch Pepper
- pinch grated Nutmeg
- 250 g precooked shredded boneless chicken pieces
- 200 g Mushrooms
- pinch fresh Parsley
- pinch Thyme
- pinch Marjoram
- Start by assembling the short crust ingredients in a bowl. Work the dough out with your hands untill smooth. Keep aside for 30 min. in the fridge.
- In the meanwhile make the filling by cooking the Bechamel - white sauce. In a pan add the Butter and heat up. Add the Flour and keep on stirring on low heat until incorporated. Continue to add the Milk and keep on stirring with the whisk, or the content will burn and stick at the bottom. Season with the Salt, Pepper and Nutmeg and keep on stirring! Once the sauce is done keep it off the heat.
- Add the shredded chicken pieces to the sauce and cut your mushrooms into slices and add them to the Bechamel Sauce as well. Season the content with the remaining herbs, such as Parsley, Thyme and Marjoram. Keep aside.
- Take out your dough from the fridge and part it into 2 halves, while one should be a bit bigger compared to the other. Grab the bigger piece and roll it 3 millimeter thick out.
- Place your pie mold on top as shown and calculate 5½ centimeters extra. Cut it circular out. That's going to be your pie bottom. Pick up the cut out pie bottom and place it carefully into the mold.
- Preheat the oven to 200 Celsius .
- Now roll out your second smaller dough to a 3 millimeter thick pie cover. Keep aside.
- Return to the pie bottom and mold, and grab the pot with the chicken mushroom sauce. Pour the whole filling into the pie. Grab the Pie cover dough and place it on top. Seal it at the borders and remove surplus dough, if there is any. Make a whole at the center and push a paper roll into it. That's called a "chimney", it prevents the pie to blow up in the center and helps it to keep its shape. Poke a couple of small wholes into the cover as well.
- You can decorate your pie with remaining dough by rolling the rest out and cutting out shapes such as leafs, diamonds etc. After cutting out place them carefully on top of the pie top and press them a bit down so that they don't fall off.
- Bake the Pie at 200 Celcius for about 30 minutes or until golden.
Now let’s get to the recent Giveaway winner! I don’t want to torture you with some more words so I am getting to the point.
The last weeks Goa Handicraft Giveaway Winner is….