Little Jack Horner's Christmas Chicken, Fruit and Stuffing Pie!
photo by French Tart
- Ready In:
- 1hr 45mins
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
- 4 slices smoked streaky bacon, chopped or, 50 g smoked lardons
- 500 g pork sausage or 500 g skinned pork sausages
- 1 lemon, zest of, grated
- 1 orange, zest of, grated
- 100 g fresh brown breadcrumbs
- 75 g ready-to-eat dried apricots, chopped
- 50 50 g canned chestnuts or 50 g vacuum-packed chestnuts, chopped
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme or 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 100 g fresh cranberries or 100 g frozen cranberries
- 500 g boneless skinless chicken breasts
- salt and pepper
- 500 g ready-made shortcrust pastry or 500 g home-made shortcrust pastry
- beaten egg, to glaze
- Heat the oven to 170C/350F/Gas 5.
- Grease and line a 20-23cm (9") springform or deep loose-based tart tin with baking parchment or greaseproof paper.
- Heat 1/2 tbsp oil in a frying pan, then add the onion and the bacon, fry for 5 minutes until the onion is softened and the bacon browned. Cool slightly.
- Tip the sausagemeat, lemon and orange zest, breadcrumbs, apricots, chestnuts and thyme into a bowl and mix together.
- Add the onion, bacon and cranberries, then mix everything together with your hands, adding plenty of pepper and a little salt to taste.
- Cut each chicken breast into three or four fillets lengthwise and season them all over with salt and pepper. Heat the remaining oil in the frying pan, and fry the chicken fillets quickly until browned, for about 6-8 minutes.
- Roll out two-thirds of the pastry to line the springform or loose-based tart tin; make sure the pastry comes right up the sides of the tin, and extends over the edge of the tin a little bit. Press in half the sausage mixture and spread to level. Then add the chicken pieces in one even layer and cover with the rest of the sausage mixture. Press down lightly.
- Roll out the remaining pastry, leaving a little pastry for the decorative shapes. Brush the edges of the pastry base with beaten egg and cover with the pastry lid. Pinch and crimp the edges to seal, then trim.
- Brush the top of the pie with egg, then roll out the excess pastry trimmings to make holly leaf shapes and berries. Decorate the pie with the shapes and brush again with egg.
- Set the tin on a baking sheet and bake for 1 hour to 1 hour 15 minutes, then cool in the tin for 15 minutes. Remove the pie from the tin, and leave to cool slightly. If you wish, you can place the pie back into the oven at this stage if you would like a darker crust - just sit it on a greased baking sheet and bake for a further 10 to 15 minutes.
- Serve warm or cold with a winter salads, chutneys, relishes and pickles.
- Can be frozen once cooked for up to 1 month. Defrost in the fridge overnight.
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If I could give this more than 5 stars I would. It is a fabulous special pie; the combination of flavours is superb. I made it for Christmas eve supper and it was a total hit with the family. It was so good everyone thought we should make it a tradition to have for our family Christmas eve get together. The only thing I had to do different from the recipe was to use water chestnuts rather than regular chestnuts which were not available, even so they gave it a nice crunch. I also may have made the crust just a little too short but it did hold together and cut very nicely; pretty as FT's picture. Thanks sooo much for this wonderful wonderful recipe which I know will be made for many future Christmas Eves, maybe even for other occasions too!!
Took a long time to make, however this pie was the highlight of our holiday table, we all thought the flavor and color of the fruit was impressive. we used craisins and canned chestnuts. I saved lots of your recipes and this was a holiday hit, thanks for the unusual and tasty pie, i love pies and this delivered on taste and looks. next time we make it we may try turkey meat and some ham. Thanks for a great recipe.
RECIPE SUBMITTED BY
<p><strong><span>The sunflowers in the field behind my house in SW France:</span></strong></p> <p><img title=Sunflowers src=http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r271/copperhorse58/DSCN8221.jpg alt=Sunflowers width=640 height=480 /><br /><strong><span><br /><br />I am British (English-Scottish), but I was born in South Africa and have lived all over the world, including Hong Kong, Germany, Cyprus, USA & Singapore. I have also been very fortunate to have travelled extensively over the years.........I still have wanderlust! <br /><br />I used to be an English Literature & Art History teacher & lecturer; before that, I trained and worked as a Graphic Designer for many years. I now live in France with my husband & my daughter who has just started university in September 2006. We also have one very chatty Burmese cat Willow, who allows us to live with her here! (I used to have three cats, I recently lost Monty, a beautiful seal point Siamese and before that, Rama, who was a debonair blue point Siamese cat - I would love to have another Siamese cat or cats in the future!)</span></strong></p> <p><em><strong><span>This is my Burmese Cat, Willow, sunning herself on the log pile in the kitchen garden:</span></strong></em></p> <p><strong><img title=My src=http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r271/copperhorse58/ABaconButtyandSundryFoodPhotos34.jpg alt=My width=640 height=480 /></strong></p> <p><strong><span>Here is my lovely Monty, a seal point Siamese, and Willow, sitting in the kitchen garden last year, and a few months before Monty died; he was 18yrs old:</span></strong></p> <p><img title=Monty src=http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r271/copperhorse58/AbsolutelySinfulStickyToffeePudding.jpg alt=Monty width=640 height=480 />My</p> <p><strong><span>This is my wonderful old boy, Rama, a blue-point Siamese, who died when he was 20yrs old - excuse the old and much sellotaped photo:</span></strong></p> <p><img title=Rama src=http://i146.photobucket.com/albums/r271/copperhorse58/Rama1stOctober2004164.jpg alt=Rama width=517 height=639 /></p> <p><strong><span>My favourite pastimes are: reading, writing, painting & drawing, photography, gardening, anything creative, walking, travelling, dining out and of course COOKING! 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