Lunch: Chicken, Chorizo & Leek Pie
I’ve just rediscovered my obsession with chorizo. I’d first come to love it on a trip to Barcelona many moons ago but it’s one of those ingredients I had somehow managed to forget. It wasn’t until a month or so ago that I had rediscovered these Spanish smallgoods after making Jamie Oliver’s delicious Tomato & Chorizo salad.
Whenever possible, I try to cook in-season and as we’re now in the full-swing of an Australian autumn, I thought I’d use some lovely fresh Leeks from the market. I love the flavour of the chorizo through the mixture and I especially love how it crisps up in the fry pan. If I’ve got time at home I’ll make the pastry from scratch. Pastry is really simple but a little time consuming. Alternatively you can buy some pre-made shortcrust pasty at the supermarket. As with any pastry dish, I think it’s always necessary to serve it with a nice crisp green salad to balance things out.
When I make tarts like this, I always make two or three extra and freeze them. Mid-week we’re always super busy and occasionally don’t have time to cook. These are perfect to whip out and pop into the oven in times of need. We always cook for an army so we end up freezing all sorts of things. After a Friday night out, we’ll usually fire up the oven and pop in some of our tasty satay spring rolls. They’re 1000% better than anything else you’d get late at night and are oh-soooo good served with homemade sweet chilli and a dash of Japanese mayonnaise. Goodness me!
So, make these pies for now… or for later.
Best served with Nectarine & Spanish Onion Chutney.
Chicken, Chorizo and Leek Tart
1 onion finely chopped
2 chicken breasts finely diced
1 leek finely chopped
1 tsp chopped fresh oregano
½ cup cream
3 eggs beaten
pinch of fresh nutmeg
¾ cup white wine
½ tbsp. flour
200g sifted plain flour
pinch of salt
100g cubed chilled butter
1. Place flour, salt butter in a food processor and blitz for 3-4 pulses until it resembles breadcrumbs. It’s important not to over mix the dough. Add half the egg and continue to pulse until the mixture just comes together. Add the rest of the egg and/or chilled water if it still needs more moisture.
2. Roll the dough into a ball, wrap in cling film and leave in the fridge for at least 30 mins. This will relax the gluten in the pastry.
3. After the pasty has rested, remove from the fridge and place between two sheets of cling film that are larger than the tin. Roll out the pastry no thicker than 5mm and remember to roll the pastry large enough to include the sides.
4. Remove the top sheet of cling film and place into the tin, gently pushing it into all corners. Removed the other sheet of cling film and cut the pastry by pressing your thumb down along the edges and remove the excess pastry. Prick the pastry base with a fork and chill the pastry again for a further 30 minutes (or pop it in the freezer for 10 if pressed for time). Preheat the oven to 180°C.
5. You’ll need to bake the pastry blind to ensure the whole pastry is cooked before adding the filling. After the pastry has chilled, line the tin with aluminium foil, shiny side down, and fill with baking beans, rice or dried pulses. Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the pastry feels dry. Remove baking beans and return to the oven for a further 2 minutes. Once cooked, set aside and make the filling
6. Meanwhile in a frypan, heat a good glug of olive oil and start browning the onions. Once they’re browned, add the finely diced chicken and cook well until browned.
7. Add the chopped chorizo, leek and oregano and cook until leeks have softened.
8. Add half the white wine and stir well to ‘deglaze’ the pan. Season well with salt and pepper
9. In a separate bowl, beat eggs slightly and add cream and nutmeg. Mix this into the pan along with the rest of the wine and stir well. Cook for a further 5 minutes. Finally add the flour a little at a time until the sauce has thickened slightly. Add more flour if doesn’t look thick enough. Take the mixture off the heat and spoon into the prepared pastry cases pressing it into all the corners.
10. Sprinkle a little Parmesan cheese on top and bake in a moderate oven for 10-20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with a green salad and some Nectarine & Spanish Onion Chutney.