Recipe of the Week: Turkey and Sweet Leek Pie

I was recently asked what I did with all my leftover Christmas turkey (and believe me, even though we are only a family of 2 and 1 dog, we have a LOT of leftover turkey!). My reply was something along the lines of what don’t I make with it?

Following the obligatory Boxing Day turkey sandwiches (we have Christmas Day dinner in the evening) there are sufficient leftovers to make turkey curry, turkey risotto, another turkey sandwich and cold sliced breast meat with Gary’s “Bubble and Squeak” (leftover roast potatoes, roast parsnips and brussels sprouts, pan fried with a splash of Worcestershire and soy sauces).

Plus, in my very humble opinion, the ultimate recipe for leftover turkey is Jamie Oliver’s Turkey and Sweet Leek Pie. I look forward to making, and eating, this dish as soon as we’ve bought the turkey. In fact I’d go so far as to say I could forego the traditional turkey dinner and head straight for this leftover dish.

Yes, it’s that good!Processed with VSCOcam with g3 preset

If you have used all your leftovers for this Christmas definitely save some turkey next time (or Easter or Thanksgiving), just so you can try this recipe for yourself!

Ingredients (serves 8)

  • 2 rashers smoked streaky bacon, roughly chopped (I actually use turkey bacon as I don’t eat red meat, or you can forego the bacon entirely)
  • ½ bunch fresh thyme, leaves picked
  • olive oil
  • 2 kg leeks, washed, trimmed; white end chopped into chunks, green end finely sliced
  • sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper
  • 800 g cooked white turkey meat, torn into big chunks (I used just over 500g which is still ample)
  • 2 heaped tablespoons plain flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 2 pints turkey, chicken or vegetable stock
  • 2 tablespoons crème fraîche
  • 500 g puff pastry
  • 12 jarred or vac-packed chesntnuts, roasted and peeled
  • 2 sprigs of fresh sage, leaves picked
  • 1 free-range egg, beaten

Method

  1. Preheat your oven to 190°C/375°F/gas 5. Put your bacon in a large pan on a medium heat and add your thyme leaves. Add a lug of olive oil and let it all fry off a few minutes. Add all of your prepped leeks and fry them off for about 3 minutes. Add a pinch of salt and pepper then pop the lid on top, turn the heat down to medium and let them cook away gently for 30 minutes, stirring every 5 to 10 minutes to make sure they don’t catch. There’s going to be enough moisture in the leeks to keep them happy in the pan so they should be soft and melt in your mouth once they’re done.
  2. When your leeks are ready, add the turkey meat to them and stir. If you’ve got a bit of stuffing mixed in there you can put that in too. Add the flour, mix it in well then pour in your stock and stir again. Add the crème fraîche then turn the heat up and bring everything back up to the boil. Have a taste and add a bit more salt and pepper if it needs it then turn the heat off. Pour the mixture through a sieve over another large empty pan and let the wonderful gravy from the mixture drip into the pan while you roll out your pastry.Processed with VSCOcam with t1 preset
  3. Get a deep baking dish roughly 22 x 30cm. Dust a clean surface and a rolling pin with a bit of flour and roll your pastry out so it’s about double the size of your dish. Crumble the chestnuts over one half of the pastry then tear a few of the sage leaves over the chestnuts. Fold the other half of pastry on top then roll it out carefully and evenly so you have a rectangle big enough to cover your baking tray. Don’t worry if a few bits stick out here and there.Processed with VSCOcam with f2 preset
  4. Spoon that thick leek mixture from your sieve into the pie dish and spread it out evenly. Lay your pastry on top, tuck the ends under then gently score the pastry diagonally with your knife. Add a pinch of salt to your beaten egg then paint this egg wash over the top of your pastry. Pop your pie in the oven for about 35 to 40 minutes or until the pastry is puffed up and golden brown. When the pie is ready, re-heat the lovely gravy and serve with your pie, along with some peas tossed in butter, lemon, salt and pepper and everyone’s happy! (Or with a huge dollop of mashed potato like me!)

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