Sweet Potato, Chicken and Lime Pickle Pie

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It is tradition at Bourke Street Bakery that whenever we close the shop for renovations we indulge in lunch from Cleveland Street — a busy street in Surry Hills that is alive with Indian restaurants and only a two-minute walk from the bakery. This is how we fell in love with lime pickle, a beautiful affair to have, simultaneously sweet, salty and hot. Lime pickle is the predominant flavour in this chicken pie. It is made from limes that have been cut up and pickled with a variety of spices, such as garlic, ginger, turmeric and chilli.

Ingredients

  • 100 g ( oz) sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1.5 cm (⅝ inch) cubes
  • 40 ml ( fl oz/2 tablespoons) extra virgin olive oil
  • 60 g ( oz) brown onions, finely chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) skinless boneless chicken thigh fillets, cut into 3 cm (1¼ inch) pieces
  • 200 g (7 oz) tomatoes, chopped
  • 60 ml (2 fl oz/¼ cup) verjuice
  • 5 g ( oz/1 teaspoon) salt
  • 5 g ( oz/1 teaspoon) freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 g ( oz/1 teaspoon) potato flour
  • 50 g ( oz) lime pickle, finely chopped (see note)
  • 80 g ( oz/½ cup) peas
  • 1 large handful coriander leaves
  • 1 quantity savoury shortcrust pastry
  • ½ quantity puff pastry
  • egg wash, for brushing
  • sesame seeds, for sprinkling

Method

Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F/Gas 6). Put the sweet potato in a baking tray, drizzle with half of the oil, and cook in the oven for about 15 minutes, or until just before tender. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool.

Heat the remaining oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook for 5 minutes, or until softened. Add the chicken pieces and cook for 5 minutes, or until the chicken has lost its pink colour. Add the tomato, verjuice, salt and pepper.

Pour enough water into the pan to cover the chicken. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for about 1 hour, or until the chicken is tender. Strain off the liquid into another saucepan, reserving the chicken mixture in a large container. Continue to cook the liquid over high heat until the liquid has reduced by one-third. Remove from the heat. Mix together the potato flour and 2 teaspoons water and add to the cooking liquid, stirring well to combine. Add the lime pickle and mix well to combine.

Add the roasted sweet potato, peas and coriander to the chicken mixture and stir well. Pour the cooking liquid back into the chicken mixture and mix thoroughly to combine. Allow to cool.

Roll out the savoury shortcrust pastry following the instructions and use it to line the base and sides of six 12.5 cm ( inch) pie tins. Roll out the puff pastry following the instructions and cut out six circles with a 13.5 cm ( inch) diameter to make the pie lids.

Spoon the mixture into the pastry-lined pie tins, filling them to the brim. To attach the puff pastry lids, brush the rim of the pastry base and lid with a little egg wash and lay the lid over the base. Pinch gently between your thumb and index finger to make a good seal around the circumference edge. Brush the top of the pie lid with egg wash, sprinkle with sesame seeds, and make a small hole in the middle to allow steam to escape. Reduce the oven temperature to 180°C (350°F/Gas 4) and bake the pies for 30–35 minutes, or until golden brown on top. Remove the pies from the tins and leave to cool a little before serving.