Chicken Pie

Individual Chicken, Leek and Pancetta Pies


Individual Chicken, Leek and Pancetta Pies . Homemade sage and Parmesan shortcrust pastry filled to the brim with a filling of creamy chicken, leek and pancetta. This recipe makes four individual chicken pies, which I served with some garlic greens and creamy mash potatoes. If you wanted to get ahead, you could use shop bought shortcrust pastry but the pastry recipe is pretty foolproof if you follow the steps carefully.

If you liked my Individual Chicken, Leek and Pancetta Pies then try out my other Chicken Recipes

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Serves 4
Difficulty Level: Top chef


For the Individual Chicken, Leek and Pancetta Pies :

  • 220g plain flour
  • 100g cold butter
  • About 10 sage leaves, finely chopped
  • 30g Parmesan, finely grated
  • 2 large chicken breasts
  • Chicken stock
  • White wine
  • 200g cubed pancetta
  • 1 large leek, finely sliced
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 200ml single cream
  • 1 tablespoon wholegrain mustard
  • 1 egg
  • Nigella seeds
  • Butter
  • Salt and white pepper

For the Creamy Mash Potatoes:

  • 700g Maris piper potatoes
  • 75g butter
  • 100ml milk or single cream
  • Salt and white pepper

For the Garlic Greens:

  • Green veg such as spinach, peas or kale
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 20g butter
  • Salt and black pepper

  1. For the pastry, put the flour, butter, sage and Parmesan in a food processor with a pinch of salt. Whizz until it looks like breadcrumbs and then, with the motor running, add a couple tablespoons of water until it forms a ball. Alternatively, rub the butter and flour together with your fingertips, stir through the Parmesan and sage and stir through the water.
  2. Knead the pastry very briefly, cover in cling film and then chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.
  3. Put the chicken breasts in a pan and add 200ml white wine. Top up with chicken stock to cover the chicken. Add a teaspoon black peppercorns and a bay leaf. Poach the chicken for 8-10 minutes until cooked through. When poaching, have the liquid on barely a simmer. Allow to cool and then chop the chicken into chunks. Keep the cooking liquid.
  4. Put the pancetta cubes in a pan on the lowest heat with a teaspoon of butter for 10-15 minutes, to allow the fat to render. Then turn up the heat and allow to crisp up for 5 minutes. Remove the crispy pancetta with a slotted spoon into a bowl. Keep the fat in the pan.
  5. Add the leek and shallot to the pancetta fat and fry for around 5 minutes on a medium heat until softened but not coloured. Add the garlic and continue to cook for around 2 minutes. Remove the mixture from the pan and add to the bowl of pancetta. Add the chicken to this bowl too. Allow to cool.
  6. Add a heaped tablespoon and butter to the pan and allow to melt and cook for 3-4 minutes. Top up the chicken poaching liquid to 400ml with water and gradually add this to the pan, stirring. Add the single cream, mustard and a heaped teaspoon of white pepper. Simmer for around 3-5 minutes. You don’t want it too thick at this stage as it will reduce further when cooked in the pies. Taste and add salt if needed. Stir the sauce into the chicken and leek mixture and allow to cool.
  7. You will need x4 220ml pudding basins for the pies. Line the bases of the basins with a circle of parchment paper. Cut a strip of parchment paper longer than the depth of the basin and put in the basin, overlapping the sides. This will enable you to pull out the pie using the overlapping paper.
  8. Roll out the pastry to a thickness of a £1 coin. Cut a circle just slightly bigger than the base. Put the pastry circle in the base of the basin. Cut a strip to wrap around the sides of the basin. Place the strip in, pushing down into the corners to seal. Fill each pie case with the chicken pie mixture, right to the top. Cut another circle out for the lid. Press the lid on and crimp round the edges.
  9. Chill the pies for 30 minutes. This is important so don’t skip it.
  10. Brush each pie with egg wash and sprinkle with a little nigella seeds, if using. Bake the pies for 30 minutes. If they get too golden on top, cover the tops with tin foil.
  11. For the creamy mash potatoes, peel and chop the potatoes into even sized chunks. Boil for about 10 minutes until soft but not mushy. Drain and allow to steam dry for a couple of minutes. For really smooth mash, use a potato ricer. When riced, add the butter in cubes. Warm the milk and add this too. Use a wooden spoon to beat the mash until smooth and creamy. Season with salt and white pepper.
  12. For the garlic greens, add the crushed garlic to a pan along with a tablespoon of butter over a low heat and cook for one minute. Add the spinach and peas and cook until the spinach has wilted and the peas are tender. Season with salt and black pepper.
  13. Serve the Individual Chicken, Leek and Pancetta Pies with the mash and garlic greens on the side.

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