Thursday, December 27

Pitivier of Turkey, Sprouts, Chestnuts & Bacon

Stuck for what to do with that left-over Christmas bird? Well, there will be no fooling you lot that this is a pie and as such, not a particularly ground breaking use of Turkey. But what a pie it is! The technique to take away here is the use of meat stock thickened with a roux to make the gravy - called a veloute in the trade. The combination of Turkey, sprouts, chestnuts and bacon work surprisingly well, but don't get too hung up on what vegetables to add - use what you have leftover.

500g chopped turkey
1 tbsp butter
1 tbsp plain flour
500ml good turkey or chicken stock
50ml double cream
2 large handfuls of chopped vegetables
1 packet of shop bought 'all butter' puff pastry
1 beaten egg

Reduce your stock by half to intensify the flavour. In another pan melt the butter and flour together then beat in the stock using a whisk. Bring to the simmer beating all the time then add the double cream and a good seasoning. Toss in the turkey and vegetables then chill the filling.

Heat your oven to 210c. Cut your pasty into 2 pieces, one 2/5, the other 3/5 (the larger piece is for the top). Roll out into rough circles and using two plates, one approx 2 inches larger than the other, cut two perfect circles of pastry. Grease a baking sheet and place the smaller of the two circles on the tray. Top with the filling leaving an inch round the edge free to allow you to seal the pitivier. Egg wash the edges of the base, then lay the other larger pastry circle on top sealing all the way around. Traditionally a pitivier is crimped and scored in a spiral pattern on the top - I didn't bother but feel free to ad lib. Egg wash the whole thing and bake for 10 minutes. Egg wash again for a deep glossy finish and bake - turning occasionally - until the pastry is crisp and deeply golden.  As good served warm as it is cold as part of a buffet.

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