Technical challenge – week 5. Gluten and dairy free hand – raised chicken and bacon pie.
I was slightly nervous about this challenge. I have attempted gluten free hot water pastry before and wasn’t happy with the results. It’s taken me a couple of days as I needed to make a special trip to my butchers – the lovely Martin at Boathouse Organics in Lewes. He makes lovely gluten free free range sausages and you can buy fresh organic suet from him too.
I also couldn’t find a pie dolly. Cook shops must be kicking themselves this week for not stocking them, as am I for not buying one years ago when I ummed and arred in the shop.
So here goes…. I am really happy with my pie. What do you think?
I’ve followed Paul Hollywood’s recipe for the filling. I remembered to take more photos this week too!
I’ve used Vitalite dairy free spread in place of lard. Mainly because I forgot to buy it and I thought the margarine – sorry, ‘dairy free spread’ would give the pastry more flavour. You can use lard if you want to.
Makes 2 pies
125g gluten free plain flour
125g maize flour
¼teaspoon xanthan gum
125g dairy free margarine
200g/7oz raw chicken meat
200g/7oz smoked back bacon rashers
2 sprigs fresh thyme
salt and freshly ground black pepper
150g/5oz dried apricots, chopped
2 leaves gelatine
¼ pint hot water
¼ organic Kallo chicken stock cube
1.Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/Gas 6.
2.Grease two medium sized pie dollies, approx 13x7cm/5x3in, with some oil. I used two glasses roughly this size, oiled.
3.In a large mixing bowl, combine the gluten free flour and maize flour with the xanthan gum.
4.Mix together the boiling water, salt and dairy free spread in small saucepan. Heat and stir together until the dairy free spread melts.
5.Pour the fat and water mixture on top of the flour mixture, stirring with a spoon until everything comes together.
6.Tip the dough onto a surface dusted with gluten free flour and bring together into a ball.
7.Divide the pastry in two, then remove a quarter from each half for the lids of the pies.
8.Work quickly while pastry is still quite hot. With the remaining three-quarters of the pastry, place on a flat surface and place the dolly/glass on top of the pastry in the middle. Sculpt the still warm pastry around the dolly, try and make sure the pastry is the same thickness. (You can roll out slightly first and wrap around the dollies, but be careful not to have an uneven thickness around the dollies if you do it this way). Make sure the bottom is not very thick.
9.Ensure there are no holes in the pastry.
10.Chill the pastry wrapped around the dollies in the fridge for about 20 minutes.
11.Roll out the reserved quarter of pastry into a circle to match the size of the dolly. Make a hole in the centre of each one and chill in the fridge.
12.Slice the chicken meat, and the bacon. Keep them separate. Season well with salt, pepper and fresh thyme.
13.Take the dollies out of the fridge and carefully coax the chilled pastry off in one piece. I slid a long thin palette knife down the sides of the pastry and I found using the glass made this easy because I could see where the pastry was sticking before pulling the glass away. If it softens from handling you may need to chill again for 10 minutes or so. Trim the top of the pie shells to make sure they are even, and not too tall, otherwise the sides will sag during baking.
14.Brush the inside of each pastry case with beaten egg in hope of sealing any tiny holes. Now pack the filling into the pie, start with bacon, then chicken, then a layer of roughly chopped apricots. Repeat until the filling is all used up.
15.Place on the lid. As this pastry will crack very easily, I trimmed the pastry with scissors in line with the sides of the pie then gently crimped around the sides, sealing thoroughly.
16.Brush the lids and the sides of the pies with egg wash. Place on a baking tray and cook for 50-60 minutes, or until the pastry is nice and crisp all the way around. The pastry will not colour as much as pastry made with wheat.
17.While the pies are baking, dissolve the chicken stock cube in 150ml/5fl oz of hot water.
18.Soak two leaves of gelatine in cold water for five minutes. When soft, squeeze out the excess water and whisk into the warm stock.
19.When the pies are cooked, place them on a cooling rack and allow to cool for 10 minutes.
20.Carefully pour the stock into the slit on the pie lid, to fill in any spaces inside the pie with (what will be) chicken stock jelly. This must be done when the pie is hot, if done when cold the jelly will just sit on the top and not soak into every nook and cranny.
21.Leave to set overnight before eating.