This chicken and bacon pie is the definition of comfort food.Serves 4
What’s in the Chicken and Bacon Pie?
Similar in style to my chicken and leek pie, this pie replaces leeks with bacon, making this chicken and bacon pie the ultimate comfort food. First, we’ll make a stock with some onions, carrots, celery and chicken thigh meat. Then, we’ll make a creamy sauce using bacon, cooked chicken, and strained stock. Then, we’ll finish the dish with some peas, and mustard.
A Stock is essentially any infused liquid, but what a Puritan would call chicken stock involves a chicken carcass, roasted, and simmered in water for an hour. Here, we’ll simply poach our chicken in water with some vegetable trimmings and herbs. Then, remove the thighs, strain the stock and discard the aromatic vegetables.
You can use streaky bacon for this chicken and bacon pie; however, ready-cut lardons are readily available from supermarkets. These lardons are thicker than streaky bacon, giving them a meatier texture and helping them crisp up with drying out.
Pastry for Topping Chicken and Bacon Pie
Pies like these were once elaborate meals served at feasts. The pastry crusts were seals that enclosed food and helped it cook, stay warm, and moist; they were not supposed to be eaten. Today, however, pie crusts are designed to be consumed with the filling. Our chicken and bacon pie uses puff pastry as it will rise and crisp up nicely. A light brushing of the beaten egg will give the pastry top a delicious golden colour.
1 kg Chicken Thighs, Skinned, and Deboned
1 Small Onion, Roughly Chopped
4 Sprigs of Thyme, plus extra for the stock
1 Small Carrot, Roughly Chopped
3 Bay Leaves
150g Bacon Lardons
1 Tbsp Butter
1 Tbsp Plain Flour
300ml Reserved Chicken Stock
100ml Double Cream
½ Tbsp Wholegrain Mustard
1 Tbsp Tarragon, Chopped
320g Ready Rolled Puff Pastry Sheets
1 Egg, Beaten
Salt / Pepper to taste
- Preheat the oven to 190o Celsius / Gas 5.
- Bring the 550ml of water to a boil. Add the onion, carrot, bay leaves, and thyme. Nestle the chicken thighs among the vegetables and reduce to a simmer. Poach for 20-25 minutes until the thighs have cooked through. Once cooked, remove the chicken, strain the stock, and reserve the liquid.
- Meanwhile, Add the bacon and butter to a large pan and place over medium-high heat. Cook until the fat renders and the bacon begins to brown.
- Stir in the flour and cook for a further minute, then add the stock. Bring to a boil and cook until thickened.
- Carefully cut the chicken thighs into large equal chunks and return to the sauce. Add the cream, peas, and mustard.
- Tip the pie filling into a pie dish and cover it with the ready-rolled pastry. Brush with the beaten egg and bake in the centre of the preheated oven for 30 minutes until the pastry is crisp and golden.