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How to make the perfect pithivier

by Great British Chefs22 October 2015

How to make the perfect pithivier

A pithivier is a traditional French dish hailing from the town of Pithivier in the Orléans region of France which dates back to the 17th century. Originally pithiviers were made with sweet fillings, namely frangipane, but are now more commonly savoury. This how-to guide shows you how to make our Pithivier of chicken, squash and sage recipe.

Dust the work surface with flour. Roll out the pastry to a thickness of 0.5cm. Keep turning the pastry by 90 degrees as you roll as it will help keep it even
Cut a circle out of the pastry that is roughly 20cm in diameter – use a dinner plate as a handy template
Add the fillings in layers then mould them into a dome with your hands
Roll out another piece of pastry to a thickness of 0.5cm and cut out a second circle that is 2cm wider than the first circle
Wet the edge of the base with a little water to help the pastry stick. Place the second piece of pastry on top and seal with your hands
Put the pithivier into the fridge to rest for an hour
After an hour, remove it from the fridge and brush the pastry with egg yolk to glaze. Make sure that you don’t have too much egg on your brush as it will run down the sides
Put it back into the fridge for 15 minutes
Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas mark 6
Use a small knife or a toothpick to make a small hole in the centre of the pastry and to score curved lines from the top to the bottom
Put the finished pie in the oven to cook for ten minutes, then turn the temperature to 180°C and bake for a further 30–40 minutes until it is golden brown and crisp. Serve immediately

Serving suggestions

Here we have used squash, chicken and sage but there are many different combinations you could try. Colin McGurran makes an Ox cheek pithivier and Andy McLeish uses pigeon leg in his Roast wood pigeon with pithivier, creamed curly kale and roast Jerusalem artichokes.

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