I sometimes mention things that I experienced growing up in Africa. This is one of those things. Hand Held Chicken Pies were another traveling food for us.
A lot of the time when we drove through Chinoi, Zimbabwe, we’d stop by a corner store and either buy Samosas (Get the Recipe Here) or chicken pies. These should not be confused with pot pies. There’s a different flavor, and not all the veggies – though you can add whatever you like.
I’ve been trying to find something with the right kind of flaky pastry and the right flavor of gravy. I think I’ve finally nailed it! At least, we could not get enough of them. They were gone in a blink of an eye!
Great thing is, these freeze well! You can make a large batch, freeze them, then when you’re ready you can thaw them out and pop them in an oven to heat and crisp them up. This particular batch never made it to the fridge, much less the freezer.
- 6 boneless chicken thighs (or 3 breasts, depending on preference)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 onion, chopped
- 2 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp pepper
- 2 tsp dried marjoram
- 1 Tbsp dried tarragon
- 3 potatoes, diced (very small)
- ½ cup celery, diced
- 4 cups organic or homemade chicken broth
- 1-1/2 cups milk
- ⅔ cup flour
- 4 cups flour (I used unbleached white)
- 2 tsp salt
- 3 Tbsp sugar
- 2 sticks cold butter (1/2 lb), cut into thin slices
- ¾ cup coconut oil, softened
- ½ cup water
- 1 egg, plus 1 Tbsp water for egg wash
- In a large pot, cook chicken thighs on med-low with olive oil, onions, garlic, salt, and pepper until onions are tender.
- Add potatoes, marjoram, tarragon, and chicken broth.
- Remove chicken and dice while potatoes are cooking.
- Combine flour and milk with a whisk and add to pot.
- Stir on low until thickened and potatoes and chicken are cooked through.
- Remove from heat and cool. It doesn't have to get cold, but it helps if it is not hot.
- Combine 4 cups flour, salt, and sugar.
- Cut in butter and coconut oil until pastry in crumbly in texture. Coconut oil should not be hot, but can be softened.
- Slowly add water until dough begins to stick together when pinched.
- Form dough into two balls; touching and working with it as little as possible. Flatten both balls, wrap individually in plastic wrap, and put in fridge while filling cools.
- To Combine: Keep dough in fridge until ready to roll out. Roll out dough until ⅛ inch thick. I used a 6" glass bowl to cut circles (see below).
- Place a little filling on each circle, fold dough over, and pinch. Poke with a fork a few times to release steam while cooking.
- Place on ungreased cookie sheet. Repeat.
- Brush with egg wash.
- Bake at 400 degrees F for 25-30 minutes, or until they begin to brown.