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Esurientes - The Comfort Zone

Monday, January 10, 2005

Turkey & ham Christmas leftovers pie


This is something I made to use up the many leftovers we had in the fridge in the days after Christmas. We had both a turkey breast and a fantastic cooked ham, both of which we had no chance of finishing in our small family, so I decided to look for some way to use up the leftovers.
I found it in Nigella's new book Feast, in her section for Christmas dinner leftovers (funnily enough). I cheated and decided not to make my pastry from scratch as we had a lot of frozen puff pastry sheets in the freezer. I made a stock with the bones left after stripping the meat, so I feel I made excellent use of my leftovers this year!
It's an excellent pie with a strong, savoury flavour. I can think of many things you could add to it if you wanted to alter the taste; fresh herbs definitely, cooked potatoes, other vegetables etc. etc.
I have fond memories of making this recipe; as I was beginning my preparations a summer storm came through and knocked out the electricity, so I was left stripping the meat from the turkey carcass by candlelight...nothing like a sharp knife, slippery meat, fiddly bones and DARKNESS!

Turkey and Ham Pie
"Feast", Pp 52-53.

Filling
45g butter
3 Tablespoons plain flour
650ml ham, chicken or turkey stock*
1x 284ml pot of cream*
400 grams turkey meat, in chunks
200g ham, in chunks
150 sweetcorn (I used a tin of babycorn)

Sheets of fozen puff pastry (I can't be bothered writing down her recipe for pastry here)

*Nigella says she often uses powdered chicken stock/liquid bouillon added to milk to replace both the stock and cream. I did this, plus a little sour cream. After having made this pie twice, with differing liquid ingredients, it all seems to work, whatever you do.

Preheat the oven to 190C.
Melt the butter in a decent-sized pan and stir in the flour. When your roux is formed and is smooth and nutty, take the pan off the ehat and slowly whisk in the stock, with a little whisk. When all's smoothy amalgamated, put back on the heat and cook, gently, until it starts thickeningg. Add the cream and carry on cooking until you've got a smooth ,velvety sauce. Add the turkey, ham and sweetcorn then pour into your pie dish. (she and I used an oval dish of about 2 litre capacity).
Add a lid of pastry over top and make a few slashes to allow steam to escape.
Put in the oven for 20-30 minutes until pastry is golden.

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