Chicken bastilla

Preparation time
less than 30 mins

Cooking time
1 to 2 hours

Serves
Serves 4



From Hairy Bikers – Chicken & Egg

Ingredients

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 4–6 large chicken thighs (around 750g/1lb 10oz), boneless
  • 10g/½oz butter
  • 2 onions, finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp ground cinnamon
  • ½ tsp ground turmeric
  • pinch of saffron
  • 500ml/18fl oz chicken stock or water
  • 3 large free-range eggs, beaten
  • 75g/2½oz ground almonds or pistachios
  • 75g/2½oz dried dates, finely chopped
  • 1 tbsp orange blossom water
  • 1 tsp finely grated orange zest
  • 4 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsley
  • 30g/1oz butter, melted
  • 6 large sheets filo pastry
  • 1 egg, beaten, to glaze
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tbsp icing sugar, to garnish
  • pinch of ground cinnamon, to garnish

Method

  1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Add the chicken and fry, skin side-down for 2 minutes, or until crispy and brown. Turn over and cook for 2 minutes more, then transfer to a plate. Add the butter to the pan and, when it has melted, add the onions and sauté until soft. Add the garlic and spices (no need to soak the saffron) and fry for a couple more minutes.

  2. Return the chicken to the pan. pour over the stock and season to taste. Simmer, covered, for 30 minutes, or until the chicken is cooked through and tender.

  3. Remove the chicken again and set aside. When it is cool enough to handle, finely chop it. Meanwhile, reduce the cooking liquid by half.

  4. Add the eggs to the cooking liquid and cook over a low heat until it resembles loose-textured scrambled eggs. Add the almonds and stir, then stir in the dates, orange blossom water, orange zest, chicken and finally the parsley. Remove from the heat and leave to cool.

  5. Preheat the oven to 180C/160C Fan/Gas 4. To assemble the pie, use a 28cm/11in round ovenproof dish – you can use a ceramic quiche or flan dish or a metal tart tin.

  6. Brush a sheet of filo with melted butter. Drape it over the dish, gently pushing it into the corners without tearing it. Repeat with another sheet of filo, placing it at right angles to the first. Repeat with a further 2 sheets of filo, placing them on a diagonal angle.

  7. Spread the filling over the pastry. Fold over the overhanging filo, in reverse order – the filling should be just about covered by the filo. Cut the remaining 2 sheets of filo to fit the dish. Brush with melted butter, then cover the pie with the pastry, tucking under any corners. Bake for 30 minutes, or until crisp and brown. Leave to cool a little before dusting it with the icing sugar and cinnamon.

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