Thursday, July 26, 2012

Little Chicken and Mushroom Pies

The recent flu bugs have been extremely "lethal"... We were all massively attacked by this scary strain of virus and were having high temperature, coughs and snotty noses for the past two weeks. Now that we are recovering, we need good food... LOL!

So, here I am baking these little chicken pies with my two baking buddies, Joyce from Kitchen Flavours and Lena, from Frozen wings for our bake-along. In fact, these pies are so delicious and it was difficult to believe they were actually made by me. The pie crust are buttery and flaky and the chicken fillings simply melt into our mouths...

This recipe originates from the book, Bourke Street Bakery by Paul Allam and David Mcguinness and I have modified it to transform the original 12.5 cm pies into these miniature ones. It is too complicated to incorporate my modifications into the original form and I have decided to post my adapted version of this recipe.

I'm happy that there is minimal wastage for this bake. All excess pastries were cut into little chicks and even a run-away chick had no escape from my little hungry "monster"... When these pies and little chicks were served, they were all gone in a glimpse.

Bourke street bakery chicken mushroom pie

Making the pie pastry
Baking the eggplants
Cooking the chicken fillings
Making the pies
I was excited removing them pies from my oven...
The buttery little chicks...
A "chick" run!
chicken mushroom pie
A picture speaks a thousand words... I'm speechless after I had my first bite of this pie.

Here's the recipe adapted from the book, Bourke Street Bakery by Paul Allam and David Mcguinness

Make 8 x 7.5 cm pies

Savoury Shortcrust pastry

150g unsalted butter, chilled, cut into cubes
300g plain flour
2g salt
7ml vinegar
85ml water, chilled
Remove butter from the refrigerator 20 min before you start mixing - butter should be just soft but still very cold.

Mix flour and salt in a large bowl and toss through the butter. Use fingertips to rub butter into flour to partly combine. Turn out the floury mix onto a clean surface and gather the mix together.

Combine the vinegar with the chilled water and sprinkle over the flour mixture. Use the palm of your hand to smear mixture away from you across the bench. Repeat this smearing process once or twice to combine the dough together.
The original recipe mentioned that at this stage, we should see steaks of butter marbled through the pastry which gives a slightly flaky texture to the final product but I can only see this effect when I rolled the pastry.

Divide into two even sized portions and shape into two round disc about 2 cm thick. Wrap each disc in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hr or overnight.

The Pie Filling

80g eggplant, cut into 1.5 cm cubes
20ml extra virgin olive oil
1 small brown onion, finely chopped
1 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 thyme sprigs, leaves picked
250g skinless, boneless chicken thigh fillets, cut into 3 cm cubes
20ml verjuice
200g button mushroom, quartered
1/3 tsp white pepper
1/3 tsp salt
20g Parmesan cheese, grated
1 small handful basil, leaves torn

Egg wash, for brushing:

1 egg yolk
50ml milk 

Bechamel (French) sauce:

40ml milk
5g butter
4g plain flour, sifted

Preheat the oven to 200°C fan forced. Put the eggplant cubes in a single layer on a tray and sprinkle with a little salt. Set aside for 10 min, then rinse well. Put the eggplant on a baking tray lined with baking paper, drizzle with half of the olive oil and cook for 15-20 min or until tender. Remove from the oven and set aside.

Heat the remaining oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic and thyme and cook for 5 min, or until softened, Add the chicken and cook for 5 min, stirring often. Add the verjuice and stir for 30 sec, or until reduced slightly, then pour in enough water to cover the chicken. Bring to boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 1 hr or until chicken is tender.

Add the mushroom and baked eggplant to the chicken mixture and add the white pepper and salt. Cook for a further 10 min, or until the mushrooms have cooked through, then strain off the liquid into another saucepan, reserving the chicken mixture in a large container. Continue to cook the liquid over high heat or until reduced by half.

To make the bechamel sauce, heat the milk in a saucepan over low heat so it is slightly warm. Melt butter in a separate saucepan and add flour, stirring until mixture catches the edge of the pan.

Slowly pour in the warm milk and whisk until smooth until smooth and thick. Remove from the heat and pour into the chicken mixture and stir through. Add the Parmesan and stir to combine, then adjust the seasoning. Allow to cool before stirring through the torn basil leaves.

Remove pastry from refrigerator 20 min before you wish to roll it. On a lightly floured surface, gently roll the pastry away until you get a flat round disc about 3 mm thick. Cut the rolled pastry into eight circles with 10 cm diameter and use them to line the base and sides of the pie tins.

For the pie lids, cut out the rolled pastry into six circles with 7.8 cm diameter. Using a little chick cookie cutter, cut a hole in the middle of each pie lid to allow steam to escape while baking.

Spoon the mixture into the pastry-lined pie tins, filling them to the brim. To attached the lid pastry, brush the rim of the pastry base and lid with a little egg wash and lay the lid over the base. Gently press the circumference edge with an end of a fork in order to make a good seal. Brush the top of the pie lid with egg wash.

Reduce oven temperature to 160°C fan forced and bake the pies for 30-35 min or until golden brown on top. Remove the pies from the tins and leave to cool for a few min before serving.

Happy Baking
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Please note that the linky tool for bake-along is no longer available.


  1. Zoe I love your chicken pie especially the run away chick, so cute!

  2. Glad you guys are feeling better! These little pies are awesome.


  3. So your mushroom filing with is new to me.

  4. My my, Zoe, you make your own puff pastry. It looks so crispy and good. You are so creative. Your little chicken pie is so cute.

  5. Are these not the cutest little pies or what?! You are always so impressive!!

  6. Your lil chicken pie is awesome! I like the cutout, it reveals bits of the succulent filling - something mysterious or so!

  7. These are so cute and look delicious! I love all the pictures. (Sorry to hear you guys were ill and glad you're all better).

  8. Yr pics did show a thousand words abt the pies u made... they look so amazing... How i wish i can have 1 chix pie now... the chicks were cute too!!

  9. Glad to hear that you and your family are feeling better! My children have also caught the flu bug here... hehe your little buttery chicks are so cute!

  10. Beautiful done, i love the idea of adding eggplant .
    Bookmarked this recipe for future use :)

  11. Oh, so sorry a virus is going around, no fun! These pies are wonderful, they turned out really nice. You put a lot of work in these! I just love the little chicken...the one that got away! :)

  12. Your mini pie look very yummy! I'm sure we especially my hubby going to like it. Hope I have time to make chicken pie and share :) thanks for the details instructions.

  13. This for sure looks delicious! I want to have a bite :)

  14. THats a an unusual combination eggplants and chicken in a pie!. Love those cute chicks :)

  15. Hi Zoe, the little pies look so delicious and the chicks are so cute! I'm glad to hear your family is better now. It's hard to be sick and have to care for the little one as well. Take care.

  16. hi zoe, your chicken filling is delicious and also first time hearing verjuice, so i guess it's beer from what i see at the packaging. The chicken must be so tender and full of flavour! also love the way you formed the top crust, looks very special!!

    1. Hi Lena,

      Glad that you like the little chick top crust of my pies :D

      To clarify, verjuice is an acidic juice made by pressing unripe grapes. The one that I'm using is produced by Maggie Beer, a celebrity South Australian cook. I saw her at the recent Melbourne Food and Wine show and she was promoting a lot of her brand of produces. I like Maggie Beer and her cooking a lot but find her being very commercialised in these recent years.


  17. Your recipe looks quite interesting and i would surely like to try this.

  18. I couldn't help but smile at that cute chicks cutouts ! The mini pies look deliciously cute ! :D

  19. I like the chick shaped opening, so cute!

  20. Oh I love eggplant...the pies look so cute and yummy.

  21. Cute, delicious pies! Using eggplants is a new one for me! Got to try with eggplants one of these days. Been reading all the great reviews about this book!
    Glad that everyone is OK now! Take care!

  22. Looks delicious! I love the little chicks, so cute and tasty :)

  23. This is just amazing!! They look superb these little pies and they must taste delicious too. Really well done on these!

  24. Hi Zoe. So sorry to hear that the flu bug hit you all, but I'm happy to hear that your all recovered and eating again.

    These pies look like the perfect comfort food. Perfect for those cold winter evening. I also love that they are bite size, because it's all about presentation, right?

  25. Oh my gosh, these are so cute and look delicious too!

  26. They look lovely...I think I need cooking lessons I'm terrible!
    Sorry to hear the flu got you too but glad you're feeling better :)

  27. i also almost recovered from flu..everything look soooo cute..i have this book too, need to find one day to bake this pie..

  28. Too cute! I like the look of this pie very much, so much filling peeping through the hole:D

  29. I'm so glad to hear you're on the road to recovery, Zoe, and these little tarts look like the perfect thing to help! They're so adorable and sound delicious. I'm featuring this post in today's Food Fetish Friday (with a link-back and attribution). I hope you have no objections and I can't wait to see what you create next…

  30. Your little chicks remind me of goldfish crackers!

  31. These are little gems and I love the eggplant in don't see that very often!
    Glad everyone is feeling better at your house!

  32. DELICIOUS! Your little chickie cut-outs are so cute!

  33. Glad that you & your family are getting better! Love this cute chicken pie! Looks so delicious & cute with birdy! heheheh

  34. Zoe, no wonder you have been quiet for a while! Rest well! This is one of the reasons that I hate winter.Like Ethan always get the virus from his dare care, then pass on to Isabelle & when she has flu/cold, she end up of having ear & throat infections. She is still on the antiobiotic!

    I notice that you used Maggie Beer's product! Love the mini pies & the chicks, wasted no food at all! Next time can put a black sesame seed there to make the eye, hahaha! Take care & have a good weekend!

  35. Glad to hear that you all are fine now and these tarts are great.I love those super cute chicks :D.
    About the butter cake, we dont get sour cream here (only some super pricy/fancy specialty shops stock it) so I add 2 tablespoon homemade curd to 125 ml of fresh or single cream. Hope that answers your query :D.

  36. These are the perfect treat

  37. These are the perfect treat

  38. Zoe this look really amazing and beauty!!

  39. Those look delicious. Love the flavors.

  40. Beautiful presentation and your pies look delicious and creamy, Zoe. Love your little chicky for the effect.

  41. Hi Zoe! I'm also speechless, after looking at your chicken pie... the mini chicks are so adorable! The chicken pie looks absolutely delicious! Yum!

  42. Joined this for the first time. Thanks for the inspiration. I adore the little chicks cut out -- reminds me of twitter. And I do love the addition of eggplant and bechamel sauce. Sounds divine! :D

    (P/S Not sure if the name of my link could be changed.... I should have added the recipe name as well... newbie mistake)

  43. Really cute! A great take on the classic chicken pot pie. Glad to hear you and your family are recovering from the flu - this dish will certainly help speed that along! Great photos, great recipe, heck, great post! Thanks.

  44. I have been also recovering for whole week, and I think that I am finally better. I hope you will have speedy recovery too!

    Ok that last shoot, what can I's soo good! I wish I could just bite it through the laptop. Great pies, and the filling is just what I love the most! Have a great week ahead!

  45. This is so lovely! I love the lil chicks on top! I'm sure kids will love this pie!!

  46. These are adorable with the little chick cut-outs!

  47. Wow, this recipe makes me wish it was fall already! Yummy!

  48. Hi Zoe,
    Your little chicken mushroom pie is so adorable. Nice too see, nice to
    Love your buttery and flaky pie crust. I am going to book mark this and make this soon.
    May I know is there any other ingredient that i can use to replace 'verjuice'?
    Have a nice week ahead.

    1. Hi mui mui,

      You can replace verjuice with less acidic vinegar or even lemon juice. Being a fan of Maggie Beer, I'll like to cook the filling with verjuice :D


    2. Hi Zoe,
      Thanks, i will try using lemon juice as it is easier for me to get..^^

  49. can i put the chicken pie in the freezer?