This is one hell of a pie. A creamy, winey sauce with colourful veg and succulent chicken under a layer of crispy, herby puff pastry. Comfort food 101. This recipe will also teach you how to make chicken stock and how to make white sauce, both of which will be helpful in tonnes of dishes.
Snap the celery in half, cut the carrot and onion in half and add all 3 veg to a large pan. Place the chicken carcass and all the removed pieces into the pan along with the bay leaves parsley stalks and peppercorns. fill up with cold water so everything is submerged and cover with a lid. Heat to a boil, then gently simmer for 90 minutes, removing the two legs and two breasts after 30 minutes of simmering. Top up with more water if the carcass becomes uncovered as the water evaporates. Drain the chicken stock pan through a fine sieve to get chicken stock, all the bits can be thrown away now.
Melt the butter for the filling in a small saucepan and add the flour once melted. Stir as the mixture forms a paste, then add a small amount of the chicken stock, stirring continually.
Add a little more stick each time the butter and flour sauce has fully absorbed the last batch and is bubbling again. Turn down the heat once you have the consistency of thick custard and allow it to bubble very gently for 4-5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Peel the carrot and top and tail the leeks. push them both through a course grating disc on a food processor. Fry the sliced leeks and carrot in large saucepan with the shot of oil for a minute or so to soften, then add in the peeled and crushed cloves of garlic. Splash in the white wine and allow to reduce until the liquid has almost disappeared. Pour the white sauce into the leeks and dribble in the cream too, then heat to a bubble.
Strip all of the cooked meat from the chicken legs and breast and add to the sauce along with the chopped tarragon. Season to taste and leave the pie filling to cool.
Roll the puff pastry out on a floured surface and scatter with the chopped rosemary and sea salt. Preheat an oven to 200°C.
Fill your pie dishes almost to the top with your cooled mixture and brush around the edges with beaten egg. Cut pastry pieces to fit the pie dishes you’re using. Lay the pastry lids on top and press down. brush over the pastry with more beaten egg and bake for 20 minutes until golden and the filling beneath is bubbling.
Serve immediately with freshly steamed veg or braised red cabbage.