Apricot, thyme and chicken pie

Apricot, thyme and chicken pie

The Herb & Flower Cookbook
Cooking time
65 mins

This is a modern take on a true classic – ploughman’s tart. The pie is best when it is eaten cold and in nice thick slices. The apricots act a bit like chutney, so you don’t need to worry about many condiments and the pie also works well with new potatoes, salad and plenty of mayonnaise.


Quantity Ingredient
flour, for dusting
500g shortcrust pastry
1 tablespoon oil
1 large leek, finely sliced
600g chicken breasts, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons thyme, chopped
6 good-quality sausages
black pepper
150g dried apricots
milk, for glazing


  1. Preheat the oven to 180°C. Dust your work surface with a little flour and roll the pastry out as thinly as you can. Use it to line a 30 cm circular tin. trim the excess from the sides and reserve any leftovers for later.
  2. Heat the oil in a pan over a low heat and add the leek, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes or until a soft golden colour.
  3. Put the chicken and thyme into a large mixing bowl. Squeeze the sausage meat out of their skins and add to the bowl of chicken. It’s messy, but kind of enjoyably so. Wash your hands and add a big pinch of salt and a couple of hearty grinds of pepper. Using a stick blender, blitz the meats together to form a very gooey paste. Once there are no large bits left, add the leeks and fold them in using a wooden spoon.
  4. Chop the apricots in half and set aside. Spoon the meat filling into the pastry case, spreading it out evenly, and then dot the bits of apricot in a pretty concentric pattern on top. Roll any leftover pastry into thin strips and use it as a very loose lattice over the top, brushing the strips with a bit of milk.
  5. Place in the oven for 30 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 160°C and cook for 30 minutes more.
  6. Leave the pie to cool in the tin before slicing it into wedges. It will keep in an airtight container in the fridge for 4–5 days.

Substitute the thyme with...

  • Rosemary, chives or tarragon.
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