Week 1: Braised Chicken and Leek Pie

Alice NeillWeekly Recipes, Winter9 Comments

Winter is already well underway, so here is a winter warmer using lovely leeks. You can also use leftover roast chicken or turkey, just add this to the mix at the last moment. I have gone for a wholemeal pastry however if you don’t have wholemeal flour then plain pastry is just as nice! I know this may seem wrong but half lard and butter, I think, makes the best short crust pastry, however if you don’t fancy making it with lard then you can substitute the lard for all butter. I have used a food processor to make the pastry but you can easily do it by hand following the same method.



900 kg Chicken Thighs (preferably on the bone)
4 Large Leeks
400 ml White Wine / Vermouth
250 ml Water
1 Bay Leaf
1 Tsp Thyme
1 ½ Tbsp Corn Flour / Plain Flour
3 Tbsp Double Cream / Crème Fraiche
5/6 Sprigs of Fresh Tarragon (roughly chopped)
Juice of Half a Lemon


50g Butter
50g Lard
100g Plain Flour
100g Plain Wholemeal Flour
2 Tbsp Milk
½ Tsp Salt
1 Egg (whisked together with a dash of milk)



  1. Trim off any excess skin or fat from the thighs
  2. Heat up 1 tbsp of oil (olive or sunflower) in a large pan. Place the thighs in skin side down, and cook on each side until golden brown.
  3. Wash and slice the leeks keeping them quite long – about 2 inches.
  4. Add the leeks, bayleaf, thyme, white wine/vermouth and water to the chicken. Season well and simmer gently for an hour with the lid on.
  5. Remove the chicken and leave to cool.
  6. Turn up the heat and bring to the boil with the lid off, reduce for 10 minutes.
  7. Make a paste with the cornflower and a little water, add this to the pan to thicken up the sauce.
  8. Add the cream or crème fraiche, chopped tarragon and lemon juice. Make sure the seasoning is okay.
  9. Pull the cooled chicken off the bone and place back into the pan.
  10. Heat through for a few more minutes then place the mix into a large pie dish and set aside to cool.


  1. Place the flours, butter, lard and salt into a food processor and pulse until the mixture resembles bread crumbs.
  2. Add the milk a little at a time whilst continuing to mix until the mix forms a still ball.
  3. Wrap in cling film and leave in the fridge.
  4. Pre heat the oven to 180.


  1. Roll out the pastry to the thickness of a pound coin to make a lid for the dish. Trim of any excess pastry with a knife.
  2. Decorate with the left over pastry and glaze with the egg wash.
  3. Bake in the oven for 40 minutes or until golden brown.
  • Ollie

    This sounds amazing! I love the idea of your blog and can’t wait to try this recipe!

  • Thanks Ollie. All the best with the recipe, it would be great to hear how it goes!

  • NgogoFinch

    Alice this looks wonderful! I will try this out – we can get TINY leeks in Malawi and chicken by the barrow full and right now with almost non stop rain the pie sounds awesome! I will let you know if it is edible!

  • Patrick

    Great start Alice keep it up!

  • Emma

    This sounds great Alice! Can’t wait for the next one!

  • Sophie

    Alice this is amazing..!! Looking forward to seeing all your new recipes…:-) I need to start building up my vegetable patch.


  • Bob Cook


  • That is so exciting, please let me know how you get on!

  • Yes now is the time to start a veg patch! Great hobby to start the new year with.