Chicken, Leek and Ham Hock Pies

From Ainsley’s World Cup Flavours, ITV

Pies are synonymous with football, and they’re sold at football grounds around the country. As the game has changed over the years so have the pies and you are just as likely to find that the pie of the week is a curry pie or a healthy veggie pie as you are the traditional flavours. They’re not always great pies – and often you’ll find a few soggy bottoms – but at the footie, when you’re eating it steaming-hot straight from the tin foil, it always seems just right. One of my favourites is good old-fashioned chicken, ham and leek pie – it’s comforting, satisfying and completely delicious. Serve with mashed potato.


Make the pastry, mix the flour, salt and mustard powder together. Rub the butter and lard into the flour until it resembles breadcrumbs. Add the beaten egg and stir. Add just enough cold water to bring the pastry together. Form into a ball. Cover and chill in the fridge until you are ready to use.

Place the chicken breasts into a pan and cover with the stock.  Cook over a medium-high heat until it begins to boil, reduce the heat and simmer for 10 minutes.  Once cooked remove the chicken and save the stock.

Melt the butter in a wide based pan. Add the leeks and cook for a couple of minutes until they begin to soften. Sprinkle over the flour and stir until combined. Gradually add the milk stirring all the time. Add 200ml of the chicken reserved stock and simmer for 5 minutes stirring occasionally until smooth and thickened.

Dice the chicken breast into bite size pieces and add to the sauce. Add the ham hock and stir. Season, with a little salt and white pepper. Remove from the heat and stir in the cream. Cover the surface of with cling film and leave to go cold.

Divide the pastry into 6. Use 2/3rds of each piece of pastry to line 6 x 10cm foil pie dishes, leaving the excess overhanging the sides.

Fill with the cold chicken filling. Roll out the remaining pasty into 6 lids. Brush the edge of the pies with beaten egg and place the lids on top pressing gently to seal. Trim away any excess pastry. Brush the lids with egg wash and, using the tip of a knife, make a small slit in the centre of the pastry. Place in the fridge until ready to bake.

Place a baking tray in the oven and heat to 200c/180cfan/Gas 6.  Sit the pies on the hot tray and bake for 30 minutes until the pastry is golden brown and the filling is piping hot.

Enjoy with a side of seasonal vegetables and mash.



  • For the Pastry
  • 300g plain flour
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tsp English mustard powder
  • 75g butter - diced
  • 75g lard - diced
  • 1 medium egg- beaten
  • 2 tbsp cold water
  • For the Filling
  • 2 large chicken breasts
  • 400ml chicken stock
  • 75g butter
  • 2 leeks, washed, trimmed and cut into 1 cm discs
  • 60g plain flour
  • 200ml whole milk
  • 100ml double cream
  • 200g shredded ham hock
  • pinch of salt and white pepper
  • To Glaze
  • 1 beaten egg