Everything tastes better if it’s named after a county, so I named this one after mine.

The special “Pi Day” pie.

The recipe makes enough to fill a 12-inch pie dish, and serve 6-7 people. Start cooking early in the afternoon as the filling and the pastry need to cool before the final assembly!

Ingredients

For the filling:

  • 4 chicken breasts, chopped into half-inch pieces
  • 6 rashers of unsmoked bacon, roughly chopped
  • 1 large or 2 small leeks, sliced
  • 1 white onion, finely chopped
  • 8-10 chestnut mushrooms, sliced
  • 5 cloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • half pint of double cream
  • pinch of parsley
  • pinch of thyme

For the pastry:

  • 1lb plain white flour
  • 8oz butter
  • cold water
  • 1 egg, beaten

Method

First make the filling:

  1. Add some oil and a knob of butter to a frying pan, and fry the leeks over a medium heat until soft and starting to brown. Once done, set them aside in a bowl.


  2. Fry the onion and garlic until soft and starting to brown, then set aside with the leeks.


  3. Fry the bacon until cooked, then set aside with the vegetables. Use a slotted spoon to ensure the bacon fat stays in the frying pan.


  4. Fry the chicken until just cooked, then set aside with a slotted spoon again, leaving some juices behind.


  5. Fry the mushrooms in the remaining juices on a high heat, until they are cooked and reduced in size.


  6. Reduce the heat to medium again, and add all the set-aside ingredients back to the frying pan. Cook until all liquid has disappeared.


  7. Pour the cream into the pan, and mix everything together. Add the herbs and season to taste (using salt sparingly if at all.)


  8. Continue frying until the cream has thickened.
  9. Pour the mixture into a bowl and leave until cooled.


Then make the shortcrust pastry:

  1. Place the flour into a large mixing bowl.
  2. Cut the butter into cubes, and add them to the bowl.


  3. Rub the mixture between your fingers until it has all combined into a crumbly mixture — this will take a long time!


  4. Add a few tablespoons of cold water in order to bring the mixture together.
  5. Once the dough is in one big ball, wrap it in cling film and refridgerate until time to make the pie (roughly an hour before serving).


To make the pie:

  1. Heat the oven to 180 C.
  2. Remove the chilled pastry and filling from the fridge.
  3. Flour up a work surface and a rolling pin.
  4. Grease the pie dish.
  5. Take slightly more than half the pastry, and work it with your hands for a few minutes until soft.
  6. Roll the pastry into a circle big enough to cover the base and sides of the dish, plus a bit extra.
  7. Lay the pastry in the dish, pushing up against the sides, then cut off the overhanging pastry.


  8. Fill the dish with the filling, pushing it to the edges and pushing it down so that there are as few gaps as possible.


  9. Work and roll out the remaining pastry into a circle slightly bigger than the dish.
  10. Brush the edges of the pastry in the dish with the beaten egg.
  11. Lay the circle of pastry on top of the pie, pushing down on the filling and the edges of the dish. Cut off the overhanging pastry and crimp the edges.
  12. Cut small holes in the top of the pie with a knife to allow air to escape during cooking.
  13. Brush the top of the pie all over with the beaten egg.


  14. If desired, use leftover pastry to make decorations for the pie, then cover those with beaten egg as well.
  15. Place the pie in the preheated oven, and bake for 30 minutes until the top is golden brown.


  16. Serve with vegetables and gravy!