Sunday, August 1, 2010

Chicken Pasties, or Chicken Hand Pies

One of my food blogging idols is Jaime on Sophistimom.  If you have not visited her site, please, go visit it and revel in her beautiful pictures and wonderful recipes.  I saw this amazing recipe on her site and just had to try it.  Not the least of the reasons why is because while reading Harry Potter my mouth always waters at the mention of pasties, and here is a recipe for one!  But that's a story for another time.  Today I'm paying tribute to Jaime and her beautiful blog.  These are essentially a chicken pot pie wrapped in a pastry, making it easily transportable.  And was it ever delicious.  I think I needed to use a little bit more of the chicken broth in the filling, and I think a little bit too much flour got into my pastry, but it was heavenly nonetheless.  When you see the method, please don't let it turn you off from making it.  It looks long, but it's not hard and doesn't even take up all that much time.  In fact, the pastry and the filling can both me made as early as the night before and then refrigerated until needed.  Make them for someone special for an extra treat.  Make them for a picnic or a camping trip.  They really are fabulous, and you will not regret it.

Chicken Pasties, or Chicken Hand Pies
by Jaime on Sophistimom

1 medium potato, peeled and diced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 small onion, finely diced (I omitted this and added more celery to replace it)
1 stalk celery, finely diced (I added 1-2 stalks)
2 large carrots, chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon flour
1 14-oz can chicken stock
1 bouillon cube or 1 tablespoon Better than Bouillon
Salt and pepper to taste
1-2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
Pastry dough (recipe follows)
1 egg, plus a teaspoon of water, beaten

Place potatoes in a medium saucepan, and cover with water.  Bring to a boil over high heat.  Cook until potatoes are tender to the point of a knife.  Drain and set aside.  While the potatoes cook, set a large skillet over medium low heat and add in the olive oil, onion, celery, and carrots.  Cook until onions are very tender, about 12-15 minutes.
Melt butter into the mixture and stir in flour.  Let cook for 2 minutes or so, just to let the flour taste cook out.  Pour in about half of the can of chicken stock.  Add the bouillon and potatoes.  Let simmer for a few minutes and taste for flavor.  Add salt and pepper if needed.  Add in chicken and simmer until cooked through.  The mixture should be thick, but not too dry.  Add more chicken stock until you achieve the desired consistency (she used the whole can).  Store mixture in refrigerator until ready to use (the pies are easier to make if the filling is cold).
Preheat oven to 425.  Place a piece of parchment paper in a baking sheet and set aside.  Roll out the pastry dough on a floured surface 18x22-inch rectangle.  (A note on rolling: I have no idea how people get perfect circles or rectangles when rolling.  I never can.  So don't worry if some of your pies are misshapen - they will still taste good!)  Cut in half, then cut each half in thirds, to make 6 equal smaller rectangles.
Spoon 1/4 cup of the chicken mixture onto one of the rectangles of dough, placing it slightly off center.  Wet the edges of the dough with a pastry brush and water, and fold the longer end of the pastry up and over the filling.  Press the dough down to seal it, and then crimp with the edges of a fork.  Place on the prepared baking sheet.  Make two incisions in the top of the pastry with a sharp knife, and brush with the beaten egg and water.  Repeat with remaining 5 pastries.  Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
Bake for 15-20 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown and puffed.

Pastry Dough

2 1/4 cups flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon sugar (optional)
1 stick (1/2 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 egg, slightly beaten
1/3 cup ice cold water

In a food processor fitted with the blade attachment, pulse together the flour, salt and sugar.  Add in the butter, and pulse a few times until the mixture is crumbly and resembles coarse meal.  Combine the egg and water in a container (remove all ice pieces).  While the processor is running, pour the water/egg mixture in and pulse until mixture just comes together.
Pour mixture out onto a floured board and knead a few times to bring all the ingredients together. (I think this is where I got too much flour in the dough.  Be careful!)  Dough can be rolled out immediately, or it can be wrapped in plastic and refrigerated for up to 2 days.


Leesah said...

I want some! Fed-Ex it please!

Steph said...

oh wow these looks awesome!

Kais said...

Made these last night with the rest of the girlies here in the Utah area and they were delicious! We ran into some troubles with the dough when it came to folding time, but I think it was partly my fault for a)rolling out the rectangles too thin and b)not letting the chicken filling cool long enough in the fridge. We also ended up with extra filling and could have made 3-4 extra. Thanks Ashley! We'll definitely try them again! We all think you are amazing and miss you like crazy. :)

John and Rachel Erickson said...

These look good! I'll try them next.

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