Mini chicken pies
|chicken breast fillets — on the bone
|carrots — sliced
|celery stalks — sliced
|mushrooms — quartered
|onion — small, chopped
|garlic — cloves, finely chopped
|stock — chicken
|fresh thyme — finely chopped
|salt — to taste
|white pepper — to taste
|flour — plain
|butter — unsalted, chilled
To make the pastry:
Dice the butter, then pulse with the flour in a food processor until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the sour cream and continue to pulse until the dough starts to form into a ball. Wrap the dough in clingfilm and place in the fridge for 20 minutes, or until ready to use.
Place the chicken in a large pot with the celery and carrot, and top with water so the chicken is just covered. Place on a medium / low heat – with bubbles barely forming on the surface – and allow to simmer gently for 30 – 40 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked. While the chicken is cooking, fry the mushrooms, garlic, thyme and onions in 2 tbsp butter, until light brown.
Once the chicken is cooked, remove the skin and take the meat off the bones, shredding into small pieces. Reserve 100ml of the cooking liquid for the sauce. To make the sauce, melt the butter in a saucepan over a medium heat, stir in the flour and cook for a minute, until thick. Add the milk, slowly, constantly whisking until incorporated and smooth. Add the chicken stock, salt and pepper. Continue whisking and increase the heat to medium / high until the sauce is cooked and thick.
Once cooked, stir in the sour cream. Add the chicken and mushroom mixture and stir through.
Preheat the oven to 200 °C.
Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface until it is between 3 – 5mm thick.
Cut in circles (using a glass is sometimes easier) and line each of the holes of a muffin tin with the pastry, leaving a little extra at the top of each. Fill each hole generously with the pie mixture. Using a smaller glass, cut circles to top each pie, squeezing the top if each pie with a fork to seal. Bake for 25 – 30 minutes or until the tops are a deep golden brown. Serve warm or at room temperature.