Recipe and images by Jo O’Keefe for ele Magazine.
I love a good rabbit pie but if rabbits are not to your taste (or readily available), a great chicken pie is just as terrific. These are small ‘smoko’ size pies but you can choose to make a family size pie which is less work and presents beautifully for a family dinner.
There’s nothing more delicious than homemade pies and yes, you could make your own pastry but this way is easy and still just as scrumptious. You can slow cook the filling for these pies or cook in the stovetop, see details below.
Puff pastry sheets thawed x 5 (makes 1 dozen pies)
One egg, beaten with two tablespoons water (to brush the pastry)
600 grams of rabbit meat or chicken thigh meat, dusted with 1/2 a cup of plain flour
2 cloves of garlic, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 stick of celery, chopped
1 small bunch fresh thyme
1 brown onion, chopped
1 tablespoon grain mustard
1/2 cup white wine
3 bay leaves
Water, as required
4 tablespoons olive oil
Optional 50 gms butter for richness
Salt and pepper
Optional extras: mushrooms sliced or green beans or even cooked bacon pieces.
1. Fry the chopped onion and garlic in half of the olive oil, adding in carrot and celery, thyme, salt & pepper.
2. Remove vegetable mix from pan and shallow fry the meat dusted with flour, using the remaining oil. Add the optional butter too for richness if you like (50 grams). Add the cooked vegetables back into the pan before deglazing with the white wine.
3. You may need to add some water to make your gravy at this stage but it depends on your meat.
4. Stir through the mustard and add in the thyme and bay leaves.
5. Pop the mix into a slow cooker for three hours on high. If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can continue to cook gently on low on the stovetop for about 40 minutes.
6. Remove the thyme bunch and bay leaves before cooling.
7. I often do this meat mix the day before and then make the pies with the cold filling however you can make them the same day, just allow the mix to cool before assembling the pies.
8. Pre- heat oven to 180C (350F).
9. Cut the puff pastry sheets to line greased muffin or cupcake tins and then spoon in the cold filling topping with more pastry for the lids.
10. Brush the bottom of pastry tips with egg and crimp the edges before brushing the tops with more egg wash and place on top of pies.
11. Bake in oven for approx. 20 minutes until pastry is crisp and golden brown. Remember your filling is cooked so it just needs to heat up and cook the pastry. Remove from oven, serve and enjoy!
ele Tip: You could also pour the hot mix into a baking dish and top with mashed potatoes and bake til potatoes go golden for a pastry less version.
Want more? Click here for our Blue Cheese,Walnut and Thyme Pull Apart Puff Pastry Twirl and here for a Tomato and Ricotta Tart.