Kotopita (Chicken Pie)

Cook time 1 hour and 40 minutes (+ resting time)
Servings 4

Ingredients

2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
800g chicken thigh, skin and bone removed
2 small leeks, finely shredded
2 cloves garlic, sliced
2 tbsp plain flour
¾ cup of white wine
1 ½ cups of chicken stock
3 sprigs fresh oregano
2 bay leaves
6 silverbeet leaves, blanched in boiling water, drained and excess water squeezed out, roughly chopped
100ml thickened cream
50g pine nuts, toasted
Salt and pepper
10 sheets of fillo
50g butter, melted

Kotopita (Chicken Pie)

Method

Preheat oven to 180°C.

In a large heavy based casserole pan heat the oil over a medium to high heat. Season and seal the chicken pieces for 1-2 minutes on each side in batches. Remove chicken from the pan and set aside.

In the same pan with the juices from the chicken, add about 1 teaspoon of olive oil and sweat off the leeks and garlic for 6-8 minutes or until soft and translucent. Next, add the flour and cook, stirring constantly for 1 minute.

Return the chicken to the pan with any juices and stir well. Deglaze with white wine and using a wooden spoon, scrape the bottom of the pan to detach any caramelised bits. Cook for 3-4 minutes before adding the herbs and stock and bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer and place a tight fitting lid on. Cook the chicken over a low heat for 45 minutes and until the chicken falls apart easily.

Once cooked and cooled down slightly, remove the chicken and shred into strands. Discard oregano stalks and bay leaves. If the sauce is a little thing bring to the boil and reduce a little. Stir in the cream and cook for a further 2 minutes to thicken. Return the shredded chicken, the silverbeet that has been roughly chopped and pine nuts. Cool a little.

Whilst the chicken is cooking, prepare the pie crust:

Brush each sheet of pastry with melted butter and line a square or rectangular pie dish with 8 filo sheets, buttered side down, in a criss cross pattern (i.e. alternating between vertical and horizontal positioning of the sheets), allowing excess pastry to overhang. Pour in chicken mixture and fold the overhanging pastry over. Place the last 2 buttered sheets of pastry on top tuck in neatly encase the filling. Brush with a little extra butter and then using a sharp knife score on a diagonal. Bake in the oven at 180°C for 25-30 minutes or until crisp and golden.

Cool for 10-15 minutes before serving.