Thursday, 17 May 2012

Low Fat Chicken Pie

As most of us know, when we start to head into the cooler months many people seem to acquire a little extra padding for warmth.

I am unfortunately guilty of this. As I was discussing with a girlfriend at work yesterday, winter food is so much better then summer food. During summer we tend to eat less because its just way to hot (well usually) to turn the oven on and the warmer weather just doesn't make us feel like eating.
Winter food is warm and comforting. Its hearty meals slow cooked for hours and devonshire teas in cosy little cafe or cottages with an open fireplace.

We tend to exercise less in winter too. Seriously, who wants to get up in the dark and voluntarily head out into the freezing cold, sometimes raining outdoors. They must be crazy :-p

This recipe offers both a way to stay warm and avoid some extra kilos. It has come from the May 2012 issue of Recipes Plus. I picked up some little individual pie tins at Spotlight for $20. If you don't have these then you can make it as one large pie, or even mini pies using a muffin tin.

2 tsp olive oil
2 leeks, white part only - thinly sliced
1 carrot - diced
1 celery stick - diced
3 bacon rashers, fat and rind removed - diced
500gm chicken mince
2 tbl spoons plain flour
2 springs fresh thyme
1 bay leaf
2 tsp lemon zest - finely grated
1 sheet low fat puff pastry (if making individual pies you will need 4 sheets)
Mixed salad to serve

1. Pre heat oven to 180°c. Heat oil in a large frying pan over high heat. Add the leek, carrot and celery. Cover. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes.

2. Add the bacon and chicken mince. Cook for 5 minutes, breaking up any lumps. Add the flour and stir well. Cook for 2 minutes. Add the thyme and bay leaf. Stir in two cups of water. Bring to the boil, reduce heat to low. Cover and simmer for 5-10 minutes or until sauce has thickened. Remove pan from the heat, stir in the lemon zest. Set pan aside until mixture has cooled completely. Approximately 30 minutes.

3. To make one large pie: Spoon the mixture into a 24cm base ovenproof dish. Top with one sheet of pastry. Crimp around the edges to seal. Cut two slits into the top of the pie. (you can line the bottom of the dish with pastry too if you want)
To make individual pies: Lightly spray each tin with oil. Using the pie tins as a guide, cut 8 circles from the pastry. Line the bottom of each tin with pastry. Prick all over with a fork. Line with baking paper and fill with uncooked rice. Blind bake for approx 5 minutes. Remove rice and baking paper. Spoon 2-3 tbl spoons of chicken mixture into each case. Top with pastry. Crimp edges with a fork, make two slits in the top of each pie.

4. Bake for 25 minutes or until golden. Remove from the oven and let stand for 5 minutes. Serve with salad.

1 comment:

  1. I really liked the little hit of lemon you get from these. very yummy