Leaves and Autumn and Pie! Oh My!

I’m beginning to get what people see in Autumn.

I didn’t really get it at first, it was this kind of nothing season before all that beautiful winter rain kicks in. I’m a fan of lounge room fort building, weekends in pajamas and jumping in puddles. At least I would be, except every time I wistfully proclaim that I want a pair of wellies, Wade says no. Totally not a team player.

Taken out the front of work last week…

But this Autumn thing has stuff going for it. I’m beginning to enjoy the briskness in the evenings (not in the morning. Makes it hard to get out of bed, thus making me late for work. Sorry, Boss), but still warm in the middle of the day. Pretty things to wear in the shops. Boots. Adding blankets. Changing colours on leaves. It’s all rather lovely, when you think about it.

The other good thing is, of course, the change in the kinds of food you’re craving. It’s a little less of the clean, light flavours, they start to deepen, become richer. Slow cookers are being dusted off, shanks and roasts are being purchased, robust flavours are starting to take over.

I set about this evening to make pie. Who doesn’t love pie? They’re both big and little, sweet and savoury. There’s no flaw here, only pie-filled winning. Huzzah. The best part about this one is that it’s ‘free form’. Calling something free form, or ‘rustic’, is the fancy, foodie way of saying that we can’t be arsed making it look perfect. This is a win for you playing at home because it means you don’t have to learn some ridiculous presentation technique. However it comes together for you, that’s how it’s meant to look. Run with it.

The flavours here aren’t complex, nor do they have that winter heaviness. The herbs are perfect companions for chicken, and the chorizo kicks it up a notch. The perfect stepping stone for the winter yet to come.

Chicken, Chorizo & Potato Pie

From Australian Good Taste Magazine

400g potatoes, cut into 4cm pieces
2 tsp olive oil
500g chicken thighs, diced
1 chorizo, sliced
1 leek, trimmed, thinly sliced
2 sprigs frest thyme
1 sprig fresh rosemart, leaves picked
2 sheets puff pastry
1 egg, whisked

1) Place the potatoes in a pot of boiling water. Cook until just tender, drain and refresh in cold water.

2) While the potatoes boil, heat the oil in a fry pan. Brown the chicken in batches for a couple of minutes. Set the chicken aside in a large mixing bowl. Cook the chorizo for a couple of minutes each side, until golden. Throw the leek, rosemary and thyme into the pan and stir until the leek softens. Add the potatoes and cook for 1 minute, stirring to combine all the ingredients. Add the leek and chorizo mix to the chicken, season with pepper and combine. Set aside to cool a little, about 30 minutes.

3) Heat the oven to 200*c. Line a baking tray with baking paper. Place one sheet of pastry on the tray, and spoon half of the mixture into the middle, leaving a border of about an inch. Fold up the sides around the mixture and brush the edges with egg yolk. Repeat with the second sheet of pastry.

4) Bake for 30-35 minutes or until the pastry is golden. Allow to cool slightly before serving.

Note: Only brown the chicken, it will finish cooking in the oven. I’d recommend chicken thighs over breast, as the breast dries out pretty quickly. Be generous with herbs, as always. I also threw in a handful of mushrooms, just because I had them and I could.

What do you love about Autumn? Or are you not a fan?

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